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AUTHOR or "nature's divine revelations," "the great harmonia" etc. bto 

Can there any oood thing come out op Nazareth?"— Bible. 




To Eoston : 

PH!i«r.KL-m.v : 

142 Wadiington Street. } 1856. No. 231 Arch Su-eet. 





Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, 

in the Clerk's Office of the District Ccurt of Connecticut. 





Particularly during the last fifteen months, the author has received letters 
from both ladies and gentlemen of education, respectability, and influence in this 
country ; all more or less concerning the causes of the wonderful phenomena 
recently unfolded by what are commonly termed " mysterious noises." He could 
not promptly respond to the numerous questions of these correspondents for two 
reasons : 

1st. He has been engaged for several months in an interior investigation 
respecting the nature and mode of the Divine Existence ; and while absorbed in 
these researches, it is both painful and injurious to allow foreign subjects or trains 
of thought to break in upon that concentration of mind which is essential to his 
Superior Condition. 

2d. Prior to the writing of this work, the author had not particularly and interi- 
orly investigated or surveyed the whole field occupied by these mysterious phe- 
nomena, sufficiently to pronounce an intelligent and reliable judgment upon their 
merits or demerits. Neither had he examined the subject with any special refer- 
ence to its real or apparent connection with the teachings and developments of the 
Harmonial Philosophy. 

In order to properly answer all the letters and questions of his esteemed corres- 
pondents aright, the author has been impressed to turn aside from the great sub- 
ject of his investigations, which are designed for the second volume of " The Great 
Harmonia," and write and prepare the ensuing pages for publication; they con- 
tain the author's " Interior Impressions" concerning the philosophy of spiritual 
intercourse, in its limited and broadest sense. His impressions are particularly 
addressed to the reader's understanding. 

The exceeding happiness which the revelations of the harmonial philosophy 
have imparted to hundreds of minds in the United States, is a source of lasting 
satisfaction to those who labor for its dissemination and application to the interests 
and pursuits of every-day life. For the edification of those who do not compre- 
hend its nature, scope, teachings, and tendencies, it is here deemed proper to 
remark that it hath two objects in view — two ends to accomplish, to which all its 
scientific, theological, and religious teachings are particularly subservient, namely : 

1st. The harmonization of the individual. To accomplish this, it presents 
an analysis of the human affections and faculties ; it exhibits both the natural 
and inverted modes of their manifestation ; it discovers the various and diversified 
causes of evil and wrong in the world, and prescribes the infallible remedy ; it 
harmonizes the elements of the human soul, to the end that men thus united within 
themselves, may conspire and form a united race. It supposes that man possesses 
in a finite degree, the attributes of the Infinite •, that all Development — Architec- 
ture — Commerce — Language — Science — Philosophy — Theology — Government — 
Authority — Art — Music — Poetry — &c, have their seat, germ, or beginning prin- 
ciple, in the human soul, and that the development of each one is in actual propor- 
tion to the soul's growth. Tins is equally true with reference to the race, as it is 
in respect to the individual. 

2d. The harmonization of society ; to bring all affections, professions, inter- 
ests, and pursuits into unity, as the notes of a musical instrument. Unity, as the 
author is impressed to define it in the rarmonial philosophy, comprehends every 
conception and idea of " Elysium" — w ' Utopia" — " City of the Sun" — " New 
Atlantis"-*-" Dream of Perpetual Peace" — " Celestial City" — " New Jerusalem" 
— " Millennium" — "' Home" — " Harmony" — " Happiness" — and " Heaven ;" for 
all the conceptions of which these various terms are expressive, have their origin 
in the immanent elements of the Soul, and are consequently homoccntrical. The 
various sects and systems of faith existing all evince the conception and impression 


of a period of Unity sometime in the future. Each sect, howeve, , entertains but 
partial and in many respects incorrect conceptions of that period, as each does 
also of God, of Immortality, and of that future Happiness to which mankind indi- 
vidually aspire ; yet the very existence of such a conception of heavenly happiness 
or millennial harmony among all sects and nations, and in all periods of human 
liistory, proves that the elements and causes of that conception are eternal in Man 
and in Nature, and, therefore, homogeneous with the constitution and design of 
the Divine Mind. Unity, in Man and in Society, includes the full growth and 
harmonious action of every Passion, Desire, or Love. This is the ultimate of 
God's design and of human desire ; and when it is accomplished, Man will be in 
harmony with Himself, with his Neighbor, with the Universe, and with the Uni- 
versal Father. 

Such are the humanitary objects and lofty tendencies of the Harmonial Philo- 

The author is constantly receiving communications from all portions of this 
country, (the reception of which he avails himself of this opportunity to heartily 
acknowledge,) — letters, containing convincing evidences that the work of indi- 
vidual, social, and theological reformation is strongly and steadily progressing. 
The following extract will illustrate the nature of one class of the author's corres- 
pondence : 

Norwich, Conn., January, 1851. 

" A. J. Davis : Dear Sir, * * * The work goes bravely forward * * * The 
reading of Nature's Divine Revelations has just converted an Atheist here to a 
belief in God and Immortality. Yours fraternally, * * m 

Hundreds of minds, who can not find sufficient evidence in any existing systems 
of religions or philosophy to convince their rational understanding of the existence 
of divine and spiritual things, are being constantly rescued and saved from the 
darkness of skepticism by the teachings of the harmonial philosophy. 

Of still another class of letters, containing questions concerning the physiological 
phenomena of death, and the philosophy of spiritual intercourse, the following is 
an example : 

Conway, Mass., Jan. 11, 1851. 

" A. J. Davis : Dear Sir, — The consolation and melody of spirit which have 
flowed in upon me from meditations guided by your writings, being yet imperfect 
in their fullness, urge me to a few inquiries. 

I am ( often met by those who point to obscurities on the horizon that has been 
so expanded — to yet some clouds on the very brilliant sky that has been so gener- 
ally cleared away ; and some of these apparent deformities seem to require the 
elucidations of the author. 

1st. In the account of James Victor Wilson, why does he say that, ' we passed 
from the earth-sphere through the opening at one of the poles ?' 

2. Why, in another place, is it said, that ' it being summer and the doors open, 
you saro the spirit pass out at the door V 

3. By what law are spirits affected by gross matter as indicated in these 
instances ? 

4. How is it that those spirits ' walked' the atmosphere, when, as we pre- 
sume, it is of such uniform density that there can be no aerial mountains upon 
the sides of which spirits might walk ? 

5. When spirits pass from the earth-sphere, is it to some distant and superior 
sphere from which they often come to guide their earth-friends onward and 
hi IS In r ' 

6. If so do they affect us only through the spirit ; or are there physical and 
sensuous demonstrations ? 

Many from whom 'anxiety is not yet effaced' would rejoice to have these 
things elucidated. Yours sincerely, * * * » 

To the public, and especially to those numerous and esteemed minds who have 
solicited from him information upon the great subjects now agitating the religious 
world, the author respectfully presents the following investigations into the philo- 
sophy and utility of spiritual intercourse. A. J. D 

Hartford. Conn., February, 1851. 


Pa ob 
. Truth and Mystery, 1 

God's Universal Providence 12 

The Miracles of this Age, 20 

The Decay of Superstition, 33 

The Guardianship of Spirits, . . . . , 38 

The Discernment of Spirits, 40 

The Stratford Mysteries, 46 

The Doctrine of Evil Spirits, . . 70 

The Origin of Spirit Sounds, . . . . ; 77 

Concerning Sympathetic Spirits, 91 

The Formation of Circles, 96 

The Resurrection of the Dead, 125 

A Voice from the Spirit-Land, . t 149 

The True Religion, 161 











The intelligent individual needs not to be informed that 
this Age is one of unparalleled mental activity. He who 
reads the popular publications of these times, and has 
traveled far from the home of his birth, is not startled 
at the announcement of any new discovery in science, in 
philosophy, or in theology. And discoveries are being 
unceasingly unfolded. Realities, more wondrous and mag- 
nificent than the tales and romances of oriental lands, are 
being daily evolved from the deep foundations of nature ; 
and the familiar developments of modern sciences exceed, 
in their availability to universal man and in their powers of 
accomplishment, all the mythical achievements of magic 
and all the traditional wonders of enchantment. 

Moreover, this Age, when compared with any of the 
previous periods which, like mile-stones, mark the advance- 
ments of Time, and the events of the past, is emphatically 
one of Thought. The past is stained with blood ; because 
desire and selfishness have wielded the scepter of power ; and 
passion, not being well disciplined and subjugated to Reason's 
admonitions and Nature's immutable laws, has ruled the 
world instead of wisdom ; and thus feeling, more than judg- 
ment, has guided the kingdoms and nations of earth into a 
vast labyrinth of anarchy, superstition and mystery. Surely, 
it seems strange to affirm, and it is a thing heartily to be 
deplored, that mankind have been victims to an excess of 
feeling — especially, when almost always those in power are 
complained of as wanting in feeling. It is not, in fact, that 
influential minds are without feeling, but that its excess and 
misapplication are vicious ; it is with them that undisciplined 


and ungoverned sentiment which in the heart of the mothei 
causes her to " spoil the child ;" she is not wanting in feeling 
for- her offspring, but that undisciplined feeling, in its excess, 
sets judgment aside to make room for the unbounded sweep 
of impulse; it is that uncontrolled, unholy, and selfish 
passion which generates a frenzied fanaticism and devastates 
an empire. 

But I am deeply moved to gratitude in view of the fact 
that, without any diminution of afTectional and charitable 
feeling among mankind, this Age is one of Intelligence ; and 
that passion, which is as blind and dangerous with its 
impulses in favor of, as in its opposition to, any person or 
object, is now being subjugated to the wisdom principle. 
Love and wisdom, or affection and judgment, are becoming 
more as one — the former supplying the soul with warmth, 
zeal, and impulse ; the latter governing those zealous im- 
pulses, rendering the mind harmonious and happy, thus 
gradually bringing nations into religious unity and political 
confederation. But here I must utter my impression that 
many men have not yet acquired sufficient wisdom to keep 
them from rushing impetuously, like a tiger from his cage, 
into the commission of horrid crimes and murderous deeds ; 
they start up at the war-shout, and their voices echo to the 
call for blood ; and, though prudence and deliberation begin 
to adorn the career of public, influential characters, in our 
own legislations, — though many of their acts are tinted with 
the conservatism of wisdom, — yet, should the nation become 
excited upon some great question of national policy, there is 
not sufficient wisdom and knowledge of nature's laws among 
the masses to save the Union from a most disastrous term- 
ination ! It is well to know our internal weakness, both as 
individuals and a nation, in order to be prepared for ail 
emergencies. As "knowledge is power," so is wisdom a 
sure safeguard against all error and misdirection. If we 
allow wisdom to guide us, we shall inevitably be conducted 
into the presence of Truth, Contentment, and Peace. 

It is undeniable, I think, that Truth is seldom, if ever, 
attained when the mind, which is seeking it, is actuated by 
motives of unkindness, or selfishness, or unrighteousness. 


Truth must be sought for its own sake ; not to sustain any 
position which an individual may have, in haste, or from the 
impulsions of desire, taken, and, perhaps, upon some new 
but unwarrantable basis. The wise man, and the man of 
integrity and honor, never pollutes his intellectual endowments 
with attempts to sustain any doctrinal position which he may 
have assumed, merely because he assumes it, nor from pride 
of opinion, or nighmindedness ; but he yields his personal 
desires and material gratifications to the higher aspirations 
of his nature — is willing to sacrifice his reputation, his life 
even, upon the altar of Truth — and is ready to be led, by 
reason and wisdom, into any region of thought whatsoever. 

Humanity has been steadily ascending to the present 
stage of intellectual activity. But the discriminating ob- 
server can not but perceive and acknowledge, that the 
material and evanescent things of this present existence are 
more sought than the spiritual and eternal realities which 
pertain to a superior life. This fact has been proclaimed 
from the pulpit by the most spiritually-minded and intellec- 
tually-cultivated teachers of Christianity ; and it is particu- 
larly deplored by those whose religious sentiments are well 
developed, and whose souls are yearning after the realities 
of immortality, and for the unspeakable blessings arising 
from individual beatification. As a natural consequence of 
man's inclination to seek for and obtain the material, he 
becomes more skeptical concerning every thing invisible and 
super-sensuous in proportion to the development of that 
materialism which a mere intellectual and outward search 
after truth are certain to establish in the mind. Generally 
speaking, this is not a superstitious age, but one of Thought 
— it is not an age of religious culture and illumination, bu*. 
one of materiality and Science. The spiritual is subjugated 
to the material ; the future to the present. The Faiths and 
Dogmas of the past are subjected to a kind of intellectually - 
chemical analysis ; and the monarchical Theocracy of the 
senior nations of the earth is giving away — is melting like a 
mountain of ice before the sun — and true Republicanism is 
fast becoming the mighty spirit of existing empires ! 

In the midst of this great social and religious commotion 


and intellectual development of science, I discover a secret 
decay of man's belief in Immortality. True, the intuition 
of the soul has been sufficient in all ages to inspire the 
" untutored mind" with sublime but undefined convictions 
in a future existence for the human spirit ; but now, in our 
age of scientific analysis and material development, this 
intuitive or innate faith demands a palpable and philosoph- 
ical foundation upon which to base its evidences, its hopes, 
and aspirations. 

In all ages of the world there have been slight and exceed- 
ingly obscure manifestations of invisible powers ; (that is, as 
the materialistic individual of this age would say, if we can 
repose any confidence whatever in the soundness and valid- 
ity of human testimony ;) and many individuals, as well as 
many religious systems of faith, have received what was 
believed to be revelations from spirits, and from superior 
sources — even from the Deity himself. "But," says the 
skeptical mind, " this may be, or may not be so — I would 
like to hear and see for myself." Hence, the demand of 
this Age, with regard to a belief in immortality or a future 
existence of the soul, is, that every doubting mind may 
obtain for itself a personal demonstration of its truth. 

It is proper to affirm, that there never has been pre- 
sented, in any one era of human progress, any thing like a 
clear, incontestable demonstration of spiritual presence and 
power ; because Nature and Reason, dethroning superstition 
and invalidating human testimony, explain away many of the 
most astounding miracles recorded in sacred history, as being 
nothing more than new manifestations of immutable laws, 
not previously understood, or else as being the pious fabrica- 
tions of interested minds. Thus it is that all faith in the un- 
qualifiedly supernatural is fast decaying; for no profound 
thinker — one who uniformly consults Nature and Reason — 
can for one moment admit even the possibility of any human 
or divine manifestations contrary, or superior, to God's ur.- 
Changeable principles of universal government. 

Religious education, though it inspires our affections with 
B belief in God, and in the soul's immortal existence, is, in 
this intellectual age, thoroughly dissected and "found want- 


ing" in its constitutional soundness and powers of expansion 
— its ingredients being, as they are, incomprehensible mira- 
cles and supernaturalities — contradicting, as they do, all ex- 
perience and human understanding of truth, are acknowl- 
edged by nearly all Christendom to be unsafe conductors of 
our hopes and souls to climes which have been hitherto, 
upon the earth, comparatively uninvestigated and unknown. 
Popular science and philosophy, being almost wholly material 
and mathematically demonstrative, are inefficient in their 
attempts to substitute & faith of the understanding for a faith 
founded upon religious education, which is the dying faith of 
this age. Chemistry and mechanical sciences have united 
their powers and achievements to the end that railroads and 
magnetic telegraphs, and other commercial instrumentalities, 
might help on the progressive tendencies of this wonderful 
era. And the surging billows of thought and aspiration, 
flowing up from the depths of all past times, and swelling 
mountain high as they approach the shores of the present, 
threaten to overwhelm and destroy all monarchy and un- 
righteous conservatism. In the midst of all this commotion 
and materialism, the question involuntarily arises : — " What 
is, in a religious point of view, the want of this age ?" 

In accordance with my impressions, I answer — that man 
requires a demonstration of the truth of immortality ; a sen- 
suous evidence that the soul continues to exist in a physical 
or palpable organization subsequent to the event of outer dis- 
solution. When a friend or a relative departs from amongst 
us to some invisible world, then man flees to his religion for 
consolation and faith ; but, in addition to what solace he de- 
rives from this source, he internally desires some substantial 
'llustration and evidence of the continued existence of the 
departed spirit. Yea, there is scarcely a Christian who 
would refuse to receive some material evidence that the soui 
lives always, — that friends and relations shall meet, and re- 
cognize, and love each other again, in another world, as on 
the earth. Indeed, such evidence would impart a palpability 
and an enthusiastic zeal to his conceptions of a future life, — 
so absolute and strong as to convert him to the joys and 
blessings of a new religious faith based apon a svstem of uni- 


versal philosophy. Some men do not know, and those -vho 
do know, will not, dare not, even to themselves acknowledge,) 
how exceedingly skeptical they are concerning the soul's 
everlasting life and the existence of a spirit- world. About 
five-eighths of the Protestant clergy, are, in the secret con- 
sciousness of their own minds, perfect materialists with re- 
gard to faith in spiritual existence ; and yet they preach " life 
and immortality," in combination with other cardinal points 
in the existing theology, because preaching is their occupa- 
tion, and because, also, they do not know of any thing better 
and more elevating to proclaim to the people. 

As one evidence of the truthfulness of this assertion, let it 
be remembered that the strongest advocates of those miracles 
which are said to have occurred centuries ago, (there being 
no other proof than human testimony that they ever w 7 ere 
performed,) are minds who will not give any credence to the 
no less wondrous miracles which are of almost daily occur- 
rence in our very midst. So, likewise, the professed strong 
believers in spiritual existences are the first to denounce any 
belief in them, unless based upon the popular foundation of 
past traditions. In truth, almost every Christian who makes 
a practice of exercising " private judgment" on religious sub- 
jects, (though such is acknowledged to be the foundation of 
Protestantism,) would like to see, in order to believe in, those 
miracles which the sacred historians have recorded on their 
pages as faithful accounts of mysterious occurrences in days 
by-gone. In fact, there are comparatively but very few 
minds who enjoy undisturbed confidence in the validity of 
those accounts ; and the unanimous voice of all Christendom 
is — " We will believe in miracles when we see them ; show us 
spirits, and we will believe in their existence /" 


God expands himself so perfectly throughout all nature, 
and breathes the heavenly principles of his own constitution 
s.» unchangeably into every department of his universe, that 


not even the least thing can properly complain of any inat- 
tention in all the vast empire of animated existence. God's 
providence, like his divine essence, is universal! It em- 
braces the whole, and, hence, also the parts. There is no 
special interference of Deity in the operations of Nature, of 
which man is a portion ; but God governs and controls every 
thing with an unwavering government, — and, with what un-« 
utterable perfection ! Behold, the bird has its provisions of 
air, and food, and clothing, — all adapted to the temperature 
of the climate in which it lives, and to its little mission in the 
order of nature ! See, how means are adapted to ends ! The 
eye to light ; the ear to sounds ; the tongue to speech ; the 
soul to thought and heavenly sentiments. Verily, there are 
no desires without their appropriate gratifications ; no de- 
mands without their proper supplies. This is surely a law 
of existence, — an unmistakeable and magnificent feature in 
the universal and perfect providence of Deity. If you thirst 
physically, go to the health-giving spring ; it spiritually thirsty, 
go to the great, inexhaustible fountain of Truth. If your 
bodies hunger for food, go seek Nature's luxuriant and whole- 
some provisions ; her larder is never without the appropriate 
articles of nourishment. If your spirits call for spiritual food, 
then seek ye first the " kingdom of God and its righteous- 
ness," and all the rest shall be added unto you. Thus, too, 
are we blessed in the affections of our nature. We have no 
loves which have not their objects ; no feelings which have 
not their friendships ; no affinities without ultimate destina- 
tions ! We want water, and there is water ; we want food, 
and there is food ; we want love, and there is love ; we want 
immortality, and there is immortality ; we want a God, and 
there is a God ! And such is the perfection and unchange- 
ability of this great law of universal adaptation, that it is per- 
fectly safe and reasonable to affirm, and also to expect, that 
when man wants miracles he will assuredly find them ; when 
he wants to see, and hear, and converse with spiritual beings. 
he may rest satisfied in the belief that his desire has, some- 
where in the great providential allotments of God's immu- 
table laws, its complete and appropriate gratification ! 

Undoubtedly, the religious want of this age has its proper 



supply. It is an age of sensuous investigation — the earth's 
inhabitants desire, and will only believe in, external and 
superficial things ; hence there are adequate means adapted 
to the accomplishment of higher ef.ds — to the development 
of an age of spiritual investigation — when the general mind 
will desire, and will place its affections upon those things 
only which are interior and permanent ! Now, let me not be 
misapprehended. I say this age wants miracle, and there is 
miracle ; it wants sensuous demonstrations of the truth of 
immortality, and there are sensuous demonstrations ! But J 
do not regard these undeniable manifestations as the result 
of an; special plan among the inhabitants of the spheres, nor 
as an act of special legislation or providence on the part of 
the Divine Mind ; nor am I impressed to connect the spirit- 
ual manifestations of this age with any occurrences of an 
analogous complexion and character which may have been 
developed in ages past. I am not unconscious, however, of 
the vast providential scheme which seems to begin with the 
origin of man and to run parallel with his physical and spir- 
itual progress and development up to the present hour ; but 
I am not impressed to attempt the useless task of proving the 
possibilities or probabilities of spiritual manifestations in this 
period of the world, by analytically tracing, through the 
wandering mazes of all past times and generations, the cor- 
respondential or seemingly similar developments of spiritual 
power and design. A grand scheme of providential acts and 
dispensations can be elaborated from existing materials ; the 
stages, and features, and phases — the links in the chain of all 
oriental and legendary accounts of supernatural manifesta- 
tions — can be, with much trouble and woful perplexity, dis- 
oovered, and delineated, and reduced to that order and system 
which should characterize a science ; but, after all, would it 
be a science ? Who would know ? Who could tell ? Sup- 
pose it were a science, what would be its utility? — what its 
application? We may, in the course of this investigation, 
disclose the whole law and mystery of all spiritual manifesta- 
tions, .-iikI furnish also an explanation of Salem Witchcraft 
and o! all analogous exhibitions of mental delirium or of spir- 
lual power; I ul would the same explanation serve to solve 


the problem of Mahomet's assertion, that he "traveled 
through ninety heavens in one night "? Or, would it psycho- 
logically explain the particular causes why St. John had so 
wonderful a dream on the Isle of Patmos? Or, why the good 
Paul had a vision so superlatively superb and heavenly as to 
defy all attempts at expression, and, hence, to "utter" it 
would have been "unlawful," or, more properly, unreasona- 
ble ? Yea, the following explanation of existing wonders in 
this department of human inquiry may, and I believe it will, 
be found to cover the whole field occupied by the above men- 
tioned occurrences, as well as other similar mysterious events 
recorded in history ; but suppose or admit this exposition of 
Nature's laws and phenomena to extend so far — what then ? 
Are we made intellectually wealthier by an explanation of 
those oriental and uncertain traditions or relations of super- 
natural occurrences ? Nay ! the mind grows unhealthy 
wandering in the bewildering labyrinths of the uncertain Past, 
and mystery more and more veils its perceptions, till it loses 
itself in those uncultured wilds, whence it must wearily 
retrace its footsteps to the Present to seek the true solution of 
now existing marvels and of constantly-developing phenom- 
ena ; which will alone benefit mankind and conduct the in- 
vestigating soul, not back into the dreary wastes of bygone 
ages, but beyond into the bright, dazzling, glorious spheres 
where Love and Wisdom flow like rivers of living water! 

While I do not strive to manufacture, so to speak, from 
out of all past psychological wonders and spiritual reveal- 
ments, a system of inspiration, which the world might or 
might not receive as true ; nevertheless, I feel deeply im- 
pressed with the conviction, that whatever principles will 
explain the phenomena of clairvoyance, (or spiritual insight,) 
and the modus operandi of spiritual communications through 
sounds or otherwise, occurring in this era of human history, 
will also explain all events of a similar character which have 
"occurred in all ages of the world. In taking a retrospective 
view of the religious history and experience of mankind, the 
contemplative mind can not but recognize a peculiar and 
almost perfect adaptation of all laws and revelations to the 
existing social and intellectual conditions and requirements 


of the race. Every so-called revealment of the Divine Will, 
and every code of social and political laws that were insti- 
tuted and supposed to be an expression of the methods of 
Divine Government, are regarded by most Christians as un- 
deniable evidences of special acts and providential dispensa- 
tions on the part of the Infinite God. Because, as it is 
alleged, those revealments and codes were particularly 
adapted to the social and political wants, and to the spiritual 
or religious necessities, of the age in which they were ob- 
tained. Thus it is generally supposed, that the " new dispen- 
sation" beginning with the preaching and miracles of Jesus, 
was not begun with Moses in consequence of the state of un- 
preparedness in which mankind were existing at the time 
when Moses lived ; and, therefore, that the " old dispensa- 
tion" was especially and perfectly adapted to the govern- 
ment and spiritual well-being of man up to the birth of 
Christ, at which event, it is said, the Mosaic dispensation 
expired. This hypothesis has for its foundation a belief in 
the special action and interference of God, as indicated in 
the social and spiritual government of the human race. And 
here let me remark, that very many intelligent, and highly 
accomplished individuals — men who have discovered the 
erroneous opinions and superstitions of past times — are un- 
consciously gliding into an opinion or a belief no less super- 
stitious with regard to the magnetic miracles and spiritual 
communications of the present day. Surely, it is neither 
progression nor wisdom to exchange one form of religious 
superstition for another ! 

It is manifestly unrighteous to impute the establishment of 
"old" or "new" orders and dispensations to the special prov- 
idence of God, because it is absolutely the result of an erro- 
neous method of philosophical reasoning. It is reasoning 
thus: when a tree is in the twig state it is not prepared for 
the hearing of fruit, and, therefore, God procrastinates the 
bestowmentof it until the tree has acquired sufficient strength 
to sustain the weight thereof; then he prepares, and attaches 
i" the spreading houghs, such fruit as in his wisdom he may 
ordain the lire to bear. But true reasoning would be this, 
the tree decs not hear fruit while in its twig state, because it 


has no. yet arrived at the culminating or fruit-bearing point 
in its development. So, likewise, it is only proper to say, 
that mankind display simply what they are capable of develop 
ing. Tho " new dispensation" was not unfolded in the 
Mosaic era, because the race could not have then developed 
it ; but like a tree, mankind put forth just r those conditions, 
-just that coc^e of laws and system of political and spiritual 
government, which its stage of general development could in 
that age accomplish, — and nothing more ! If Moses had been 
as perfect in his physical and spiritual constitution as Jesus 
evidently was in his, then the political code and sacred com- 
mandments of the former w T ould necessarily have resembled 
more closely the charming and refining revealments of the 
latter. But as the two personages were organized in their 
bodies and minds, so were their respective disclosures. This 
truth is easily seen. "An eye for an eye," and blood for 
blood, is a jurisprudential enactment which expresses the 
revengeful feelings of Moses and of the rudimental age in 
which he lived; whilst, "Love ye one another," and "for- 
give your enemies," speaks sweetly from the soul of Jesus at 
a more advanced and progressed period. There is no con- 
founding these personages. Moses, being educated according 
to the methods and tendencies of his age, declared precisely 
what his material and spiritual organization and state of 
mental illumination would suggest ; and so with Jesus ! The 
one tree put forth its twigs and branches,; whilst the other 
blossomed, and by its rich perfume gave promise of fruit in 
still riper ages. This was accomplished by no special action 
and interposition of the Divine Mind, but by the legitimate 
progressive development of their own respective constitutions. 
When the race is far advanced in social and intellectual cul- 
ture, its government is no longer Jewish, neither is it monarch- 
ical, hierarchical, or autocratical, but it unfolds the sublimer 
and more holy elements of man's nature, and the government 
is, or will be, Republican, manifesting distributive Justice, 
Goodness, Truth, Accord, Peace and Unity. In the lower 
stages of mental growth, " an eye for an eye" is the charac- 
teristic impulse of individuals and the mode of government. 
Action and reaction are natural to that phase of individual 



development. But in the higher stages of mental growth, the 
heavenly principles of " Love ye one another" — " forgive your 
enemies," are the methods adopted whereby to live, to govern, 
and to punish. And righteous action is the intuitive impulse 
consequent upon a high state of physical and moral culture. 

The bearing of these remarks on the subject of spiritual 
communications, will be more readily perceived by those 
minds who regard the wonderful developments of modern 
times as the particular manifestations of Divine will and de- 
sign. I have said that this age wants miracle, and there is 
miracle ; that it wants a palpable and sensuous demonstration 
of the truths of immortality, and there is such demonstration; 
but I do not mean to impress any mind with the belief thai 
these developments are especially sent by God to the earth's 
inhabitants. Nay; it is the opposite conviction, the truth of 
which I desire to establish, that the miracles and spiritual 
disclosures of this era flow naturally and consequently from 
the state of mental and moral development to which the 
Anglo-Saxon portion of the human race has generally 
attained. If this view of these things be not valid and enter- 
tained — if men do not consult Nature and Reason, and " try 
the spirits" by the rigid righteousness of those immutable 
principles which control harmoniously every thing in the vast 
domain of terrestrial and celestial existences — then, there can 
not be any limits set to the wild fanaticism and superstitious 
absurdities into which the honest seekers after truth and spir- 
ituality will not assuredly plunge themselves, to the discredit 
and subversion of all that is beautiful and saving (from dis- 
cord and error) in the new and Harmonial Philosophy ! If 
Truth is our aim — our prayer and aspiration — let us seek it 
for its own sake! "If man" says James Victor Wilson, 
" has too little truth, he is anxious — he is seeking ; and if truth 
is all he desires, he finds it ; but should he seek truth not for 
i mill's sake, but for the sake of establishing an opinion or 
hypothesis, then is he discontented and unhappy." And he 
very impressively adds : "This perverted motive sometimes 
actuates the misdirected inhabitants of earth; but it never 
moves the residents of the celestial empire." 

From the foregoing reflections it will be very readily in- 


ferred that I am not impressed to regard any manifestations, 
of a super-sensuous character, as being above, contrary to, or 
inconsistent with, Nature's immutable and universal princi- 
ples ; that I do not believe in the existence of any miracles 
which are not referable to natural causes, visible or invisible ; 
nor in the possibility of any strictly supernatural events, an- 
cient or modern ; because the Divine Mind can not act in 
opposition to the eternally established laws of his own con- 
stitution, of which all the visible universe is a transcript, or 
an outward manifestation. And when I say, that, to supply 
the want of this age, there are miracles and spiritual demon- 
strations developed in our midst, I do not mean that any 
thing, which is thus vouchsafed to man, is above, or contrary 
to, or inconsistent with, human nature and its inherent 
capabilities ; but that man, on the earth, has now arrived at 
a stage of intellectual and moral development which unfolds 
these very wonderful things, which alike amaze and confound 
the unprepared, as well as the believing, individual. And as 
a period arrived when Christopher Columbus launched forth 
on the sea of speculation, (for such the Atlantic was to him,) 
and persevered without trepidation in his voyage even to the 
discovery of the fertile shores of our own beautiful America; 
so, now, has the period arrived when the aspiring spirit of 
man can soar far, far away into the gorgeous realms of the 
Orbed-Infinitude, and discover that more glorious world — the 
spirit-land — those brighter homes of holy and happy beings ! 
And the latter is no more of a miracle than the former. If 
the discovery of the Spirit Land be called a miracle and dis- 
believed, on the ground that it contradicts all human experi- 
ence ; then let it be remembered that the discovery of Amer- 
ica, prior to the voyage of Columbus, was also contrary to 
all human experience. The one can not more justly be called 
a miracle than the othe : ; though the former is a revelation 
of much greater magnitude, importance and grandeur. 


To dwell upon the many and wonderful mirac jes charac- 
teristic of this age would not be consistent with the structure 
and object of this chapter. It is well, however, to remark 
that what is termed animal or human magnetism, is particu- 
larly and especially the grand element engaged in developing 
those miracles. And it is very safe and truthful to allege 
this unseen, and as yet \o many minds mysterious, influence 
to be the principle of " virtue" which Jesus sometimes felt 
" go out" of him at the moment of performing miraculous 
cures among the sick and disabled. But the most wonderful, 
beautiful, and momentous miracle of all miracles, consists in 
the development of those intellectual powers and spiritual 
perceptions in man's immortal soul, whereby the spirit-land 
has been discovered and its vast possessions explored. And 
I would notice still another miracle — a " Jacob's ladder," 
composed of magnetism and electricity, erected in this age, 
planted on earth and reaching into Heaven, upon which an- 
gels descend and ascend, bringing " tidings of great joy" to 
man, and imparting to him a knowledge of those great truths 
which belong to an immortal and progressive existence. But 
the erection of this ladder can not be of much importance or 
profit to him who does not understand the philosophical foun- 
dation upon which it rests, and who is ignorant of the laws 
which sustain it. Though the mind may have been awakened 
from the deep sleep of skepticism — aroused therefrom by a 
' : spiritual sound" — to behold, for the first time, he vast hori- 
zon of a new world of realities ; yet unless that mind can 
obtain a clear, consistent, and natural explanation of how 
and why those sounds are made, all mere faith in them is as 
uncertain and fluctuating as the sand upon the sea shore. 
Let us strive, therefore, to "enter in at the strait gate" 
which leads to the attainment of wisdom and knowledge ; for 
the u broad road" of undefined faith and reckless enthusiasm, 


is certain vo conduct the traveler into the realms of anxiety 
and dissatisfaction; and a complete "destruction" of all faith 
in spirituality and in heavenly things, will be the almost inev- 
itable consequence of persistence in such a course. Let us 
all, therefore, be able to give a reason for the hope within. 

I will now proceed to lay before the reader's open under- 
standing the results of my interior observations and critical 
examination of the phenomena unfolded by what has been 
termed " spiritual manifestations" — " mysterious noises" — 
' ; spirit rappings," &c, with which the public is already more 
or less familiar. It is not, however, to be supposed that I 
shall attempt to furnish my readers with a detailed historical 
account of all the communications, and strange occurrences, 
which are claimed to have originated with spiritual beings ; 
because the object of this interior examination is, to ascertain 
and place before the reader, a generalization of all the truth 
which, in substance, has come to man through the medium of 
these new developments. This object, I am impressed, can 
be better accomplished by stating a manifestation as it exter- 
nally appeared to the material senses, and then relating the 
interior or hidden causes thereof as revealed to the spiritual 
senses of the writer. To render plain and distinct the rela- 
tions which subsist between spiritual or invisible causes, and 
material or visible effects, I will carefully explain the causes 
of every event or circumstance of a mysterious or spiritual 
character with which I am impressed. 

About the middle of June, 1850, an intelligent gentleman, 
from Ohio, sought the three ladies, as mediums, who were 
then sojourning in New York, for the purpose of obtaining a 
spiritual communication. A circle of ladies and gentlemen, 
about ten in number, were already formed around the table, 
under and upon which the sounds were apparently made. 
The gentleman joined the circle, and, on inquiring whether 
" any spirit would communicate with him," the sounds were 
directly heard loud and quite en .husiastically rapid. " Will 
the spirit spell its name ?" he asked. And there was no 
sound. Taking the suggestion of another person in the circle, 
h<3 inquired — " If I write a column of names, will the spirit 
rap when I write, or point my pencil to, the right one ?" 


To this he received an affirmative reply. And when he wrote 
the name of a deceased daughter, the response was made I 
Again, the same gentleman, anxious to obtain more evidence 
that the communication was in reality what it purported to 
be, namely, a revelation from the spirit- world, inquired — 

" Will any other spirit communicate with me ?" and dis- 
tinct sounds indicated a willing compliance. Again the gen- 
tleman wrote, and when he traced his son's name, a quick 
response was given, — differing so distinctly in sound and loca- 
tion from the reply of his daughter, as to make it easy to dis- 
criminate between the two. 

The father was excited even to tears ; in his joy, he wept ! 
His thoughts were at once drawn from the lonely church- 
yard where he in grief had seen the loved ones laid away 
from him in the cold earth. His children were with him 
again ! Death died in an instant ; and the parent was not 
bereft ! He spoke to his own, and his own answered him. 
Their conversation was in substance as follows : the replies 
to the questions being spelled out by alphabet through the 

" Are you happy ?" 


"Do you visit me sometimes ?" 

" Dear father, we are always with you !" 

11 Do you love music as you did when on the earth ? and 
can you indulge in that delight where you now are ?" 

"Yes !" and here a tune was rapped out by them together, 
as they had been in the habit of accompanying each other 
when in this world. 

" Do you desire to have me with you, where you are ?" 

"Not yet!" 

" Would you like to return to earth?" 

" No ! this is a happy world !" 

The above interview was invested with peculiar and in- 
tense interest; for many gloomy and erroneous tnoughts 
associated with death, and concerning the realities of the 
" world beyond the grave," had frequently overshadowed and 
bewildered the brighter hopes and contemplations of the 
father; and those thoughts were, on this very impressive oc- 


casion, swept away ; his hopes, no longer obscured, were 
converted into blissful realities, and already he had met his 
children on the threshold of the spirit-land. 

This was a true and beautiful specimen of many, very 
many spiritual communications of like nature which have 
emanated from the future home of the soul. And it is for 
this reason — it being an impressive illustration of numerous 
instances similar to what the reader may have obtained 
through the sounds, or seen reported in public prints — that 1 
am impressed to select it as the basis of an explanation. But 
here let it be remembered that I am writing, not what from 
time to time I have witnessed of these things while in my 
ordinary state, — beholding them at these times, like other 
minds, only with my outward organs of perception, — but 
what I now relate is obtained from a very recent interior 
retrospection of the whole field occupied by these mysterious 
phenomena, commencing with their birth and following them 
through their subsequent developments. 

At this present, I have learned for the first time, by an in- 
terior and particular investigation, that those "raps" were in 
very truth caused by the spirits of that father's son and daugh- 
ter. It is a great truth, that the inhabitants of the second 
sphere can, and do, at times, communicate their thoughts and 
sentiments to the inhabitants of the earth. Probably I have 
more personal and practical evidence — more internal and 
unmistakable demonstration — of this consoling and elevating 
truth than the reader, (unless, indeed, his own spiritual per- 
ceptions have revealed these interior realities to his under- 
standing,) can wholly comprehend and appreciate ; and I, 
therefore, expect him to seek substantial evidence for him- 
self in every possible direction. For what is evidence to me, 
can not be demonstration to another ; and I say, therefore, 
"^t every one be fully persuaded in his own mind" of the 
truth of these things ; then there will be no room for skepti- 
cism, especially if our persuasion or faith, (rather knowledge,) 
is based upon the everlasting foundation of nature and reason. 

The father above alluded to, could not see his children ; but 
they responded when he wrote their names, and that was suffi- 
cient demonstration for him — he was perfectly and pleasura- 


bly satisfied ! But was his faith well-grounded ? Suppose 
that, from the silent meditation of his happiness, occasioned 
by the sweet communication he had but just enjoyed, a skep- 
tic should suddenly arouse him, and ask, " what evidence had 
you that those were your children responding ?" The father 
would doubtless start up and answer, " I do not question it ; 
I am satisfied I" But let him go out into the world, and en- 
counter all the opposition which existing materialism and 
supernatural theology openly manifest toward new develop- 
ments, and he will soon acknowledge that all the evidence 
which he received that his children were really communica- 
ting with him, consisted in some vibratory sounds being made 
when he wrote their names. Now, unless he be a man well 
versed in the philosophy of the soul's constitution and immor- 
tality, — having a knowledge of how the human spirit is organ- 
ized, and how it can communicate with other and congenial 
spirits, — it is almost certain that the perplexing interrogations 
put by positively skeptical minds will eventually succeed in dis- 
sipating from the father's affections and judgment the beauti- 
ful, truthful, and soul-expanding conviction, that his children 
really spoke to him from higher spheres. Nor, without a phi- 
losophical comprehension of the subject of spiritual inter- 
course, could his faith withstand the discovery of counterfeit 
communications. In truth, without the requisite amount of 
philosophical knowledge, his faith could be rendered "sure 
and steadfast" only by continual additional evidence, in the 
form of miracle ; because miracle, and not philosophy, was 
the original cause, and would continue to be the foundation, 
of his beautiful conviction. 

Now I am impressed to regard such a miracle as being 
valuable in two ways : first, as an effect, that admonishes the 
beholder, and him who hears, to acquaint his mind with the 
great philosophy of causes ; and, second, I regard it as an 
illustration and an intimation of some grand truth, or princi- 
ple, in the great system of the material and spiritual uni- 
veebe, with which the true philosopher has already familiar- 
ized his mind to considerable extent. The spiritual commu- 
nication above related, is to me, I repeat, a beautiful illustra- 
tion of a sublime and world-revolutionizing philosophy; but, 


to many individuals — to th§ vast majority of inte lects — it is 
but an astounding effect of some hidden and mysterious causes 
which the material senses can not recognize or worldly reason 
comprehend. For the latter class of individuals, especially, 
do I design this analytical investigation. 

Let us now proceed. I have said that the sounds were 
really produced by the spirit-children, with whom the father 
held converse. But the question now arises, " upon what 
principles or conditions are spiritual communications made?" 
Interior perception enables me to reply, that, in the first 
place, a good moral or intellectual state is not a prerequisite 
condition on the part of the individual or individuals who con- 
stitute the medium for electrical intercourse with spiritual be- 
ings. This, at the first glance, seems a strange inconsistency. 
But when we consider that the spirits who communicate to 
the earth's inhabitants, in this electrical manner, do not, as a 
general principle, allow their thoughts to flow into the mind 
of the medium, and thence, by pronunciation, to the individ- 
ual with whom they discourse ; but, on the contrary, that the 
spirits impart what they desire to communicate through elecr 
trlcal vibrations, alphabetically, — I say, when we consider all 
this, it ceases to be a mysterious inconsistency that good 
moral and intellectual conditions are not required. If the 
spiritual communications were made through the mind of the 
medium, as through spiritually-illuminated seers, prophets and 
clairvoyants, then constitutional harmony, combined with 
fine moral and intellectual sensibilities and tendencies, would 
be the indispensable conditions ; but, as the conversation 
above referred to was not conducted through the mediatorial 
agency of a subject of spiritual insight, the mind must seek 
in other directions for an appropriate and adequate explana- 
tion of the causes of the phenomena. In a word, we must 
necessarily conclude that, so far as the medium (or person) 
is concerned, some physical condition is alone required. And 
this is true. There was, at the time of the above referred to 
communication, which was held by the father with his children, 
an emanation of vital electricity from the physical systems of 
the young ladies, (who were the medium,) and the intense 
interest experienced by the entire circle, caused eac "■ person 


present to contribute largely to the general electric atmos- 
phere. The most exquisitely constructed electrometer is not 
capable of detecting the presence of this organic electricity ; 
it is so exceedingly refined and attenuated. It is a species of 
spiritual exhalation — an emanation of the inferior elements 
of the spiritual principle — which, when the mind is constantly 
and vigorously exercised, is rapidly drawn to the cerebrum to 
sustain the mental action ; but, in the absence of deep men- 
tal activity, these electrical elements flow down from the 
brain into the nerves, and into all the infinite ramifications 
of the nerves, and thence into the atmosphere which we 
breathe. Whenever the minds of the mediums were unduly 
excited, the sounds, and consequently the spiritual commu- 
nications, would suddenly cease ; because cerebrial excite- 
ment caused the brain to absorb those elements which, when 
no mental agitation existed, readily flowed into the proper 
external conditions for spiritual communication. 

That the conditions and principles upon which spirits an- 
swer, in this manner, to the inquiries of man, are simple and 
physical, philosophical and rational, can be demonstratedto 
ihe candid and enlarged understanding ; because those con- 
ditions are no more complicated or wonderful than the prin- 
ciples upon which the magnetic telegraph is daily operating 
along our great commercial avenues. And here I am im- 
pressed to introduce the language of one whose thoughts 
flowed readily into the truthful channel, while meditating 
upon the philosophy of spiritual intercourse, through the elec- 
trical sounds.* He says: — 

" In order to perceive the analogy between the mode of 
communicating between the spiritual and the natural worlds 
by electrical rappings, and the mode of communicating be- 
tween distant places by magnetic telegraph, let it first be 
understood that each created thing sustains certain electrical 
relations to all other things; that all higher forms of develop- 
ment sustain positive relations to all lower forms — as the ve- 
getable to the mineral, the animal to the vegetable, and man 
to all the lower kingdoms in nature. Ascending still further 

Apollos Munn. 


in the scale of progression, the rule will hold good ; and hence 
it is evident that the spirit-world sustains a positive electrical 
relation to the natural world, of which it is a higher foim — a 
further and more perfect development. When spirits leave 
the body, the transition causes them no loss of intelligence or 
power. On the contrary, as every step in their history while 
in the body, is marked by that law of progression which de- 
velops knowledge and power in exact ratio with the*refine- 
ment of the spirit, it is reasonable to suppose that their power 
over the refined elements in nature, and their knowledge of 
the laws that govern them, will be greatly increased by their 
immediate assimilation with the refinement and knowledge 
which pervade the second sphere of human existence. They 
can not, it is true, come in immediate contact with gross sub- 
stances ; but they can and do act upon them with powerful 
effect, through the agency of magnetism and electricity. Thus 
it can not be disputed, admitting that the spirit progresses 
hereafter, that the inhabitants of the spirit-world have the 
povjer, when natural conditions are complied with, to com- 
municate electrically with their friends in the body. When 
nature, by her constant movements toward the refinement of 
matter, develops mediums through which communications can 
be made, the spirits will be found ready to respond to our de- 
sires. These mediums are sometimes furnished by certain 
localities, usually designated as " haunted houses," where the 
electricity, from certain causes, has become so rare and re- 
fined that spirits can there manifest their presence and power 
in various ways. The young ladies of the Fox family, and 
hundreds of other individuals, through whom the spirits com- 
municate, are mediums, because the electrical atmosphere 
which emanates from their systems contains but little gross 
electricity. The spirits sustaining a positive relation to us, 
are enabled through these mediums, or conductors, to attract 
and move articles of lurniture, vibrate the wires of a musical 
instrument, and, by discharging by the power of their wills, 
currents of magnetism, they can and do produce rappings, 
like the magnetic telegraph, corresponding to letters of the 

There are many individuals, who, though not particularly 


moral or intellectual, can perform various and wonderful 
feats of muscular action and power. And so it is with the 
mediums ; so far as they are concerned, in the production of 
true spiritual sounds, their systems may be regarded as mus- 
cles whereby the spirits manifest their presence and inten- 
tions. The vital electricity which emanates from the nega- 
tive physical system of the medium, may be regarded as a 
receptacle for Lie influx of that spiritual electricity which the 
spirits, by an exercise of their will-power, discharge in straight 
lines to the location where they intend the sounds, or elec- 
trical vibrations, shall be heard by the circle of friends on 

Another circle of believers and skeptics, on the day follow- 
ing that when the conversation I have already related occur- 
red, were seated around the same table, and earnestly solicit- 
ing spiritual communications ; but the weather was exceed- 
ingly warm and debilitating, and the young ladies were men- 
tally agitated in consequence of some slight displeasurable re- 
mark made by one of the audience, and the sounds were not 
heard. After several unsuccessful efforts to induce the pheno- 
mena of the " rappings," one of the individuals present queried 
thus : " If there be such a thing as spiritual manifestations, I 
do not understand why they are not made when we are so 
anxious for them." And soon, though not in answer to the 
gentleman's query, but from other causes, the sounds com- 
menced. And here, before I proceed to relate the conversa- 
tion with the spirits, which followed, I desire to explain why 
the manifestations are sometimes not made when they are 
anxiously solicited. I have said that a good physical condi- 
tion, and not necessarily a moral one, is particularly required. 
But this condition can be altered or vitiated, so to speak, by 
mental agitation and positive anxiety. Vital electricity is 
exhaled from the spiritual principle, ••hrough the nervous sys- 
tem, in great abundance, whenever the mind is perfectly 
passive — when all is still and tranquil within the chambers 
of thought — and when no emotions or anxieties swell the 
soul, and cause it to absorb the atmospherical emanations 
which naturally surround the outer form. An anxious state 
is a positive state, which is highly unfavorable to spiritual 


influx, either into the receptive vessels of the mind, or into 
the vital-electrical medium, or atmosphere, which is the pre- 
requisite condition through which the sounds are made. More- 
over the exceedingly warm weather is unfavorable to this 
electrical emanation. The excessive heat causes a kind of 
exhaustion, or rather it dilutes the vigor of the mediatorial 
elements which unite the physical organization of spirits to 
that which man possesses. And not till the attention'of the 
circle of minds was withdrawn from the intense desire for 
manifestations — their too anxious feelings being exhausted by 
the conviction that no communications would be received 
during that session — and when the more quieted condition 
of the mediums permitted, not till then, could the sounds be 
made. The conversation now proceeded, and a gentleman 
inquired : 

"Is my guardian angel present?" 

No answer, 

" Is my brother here ?" was then asked by a lady. 

" Yes." 

" Will he give me a test by which I may know that it is 
him ?" 

"Yes.". And according to the method which had been 
adopted by many individuals, she wrote down a column of 
names, including that of her brother, and then pointing with 
her pencil to each one, she said, " is this his name ? is this 
it ?" and so on, in order, till she came to the right one, and 
immediately the sounds were, heard. She then inquired : 

"Will my brother tell me what his age was when he de- 
parted this life ?" 

" Yes !" the spirit eplied. And when she wrote the correct 
age, the response was quickly given. She again inquired: 

" Will my brother tell me the name of the place where he 
was when his spirit left his body ?" 


She then audibly pronounced the names of different vil- 
lages and cities, and at the right place, the sounds distinctly 
indicated an affirmative. 

Again the lady asked, "Have you any message for our 
father and mcther, or for our sisters at home ?" 


" Yes !' replied the spirit, by sounds ; and tne signal for the 
alphabet being given, the following sentence was spelled out : 

" Tell mother and sister" (correctly spelling the name of 
one in particular,) " that I am happy, and want them to come 
here and communicate with me" 

Following this, there were several other communications, 
each glowing with intense interest, especially for those to 
whom the messages and responses were made. And here it is 
well to observe, that private messages, though the most con- 
vincing of any received, are seldom published to the world. 

I have been impressed to record the above intercourse, as 
the basis of an explanation of another apparently inexplicable 
mystery connected with this mode of spiritual communica- 
tion. The lady, while conversing, doubtless believed that the 
spirit of her brother was somewhere in that room. It was 
doubtless pleasant for her to think him so near, all unattrac- 
tive as was the locality of their meeting — there, in a heated, 
close, and crowded room, in the midst of all the bustle and 
confusion of a large hotel, situated in a discordant and noisy 
city, and impregnated with the unwholesome atmosphere of 
many human breaths, — it was not a place where we should 
wish to invite a spirit from heavenly spheres. But I find 
that almost every person whose mind has been deeply im- 
pressed with the truth of spiritual intercourse, is more or less 
imbued with the conviction that spirits are always in our 
immediate presence when communicating ; and by our mis- 
understanding of them, the spirits are sometimes supposed to 
affirm it themselves, as in those instances where it is so often 
at the circles asked of them, "do you visit me sometimes ?" 
or, " will you visit me in my room to-night ?" or, " are you 
near me ?" and the sounds will, by the letters of the alpha- 
bet, spell out in reply, " we are always with you !" or, " yes, 
I will come to your room \" or, " I stand by your side !" 

Now it is well for the reader to understand that, notwith- 
standing the apparent annihilation of time and space to the 
immortal soul, there is still time to be consumed, and space to 
be traversed in the spirit-land. Time passes into eternity, 
and space into infinity, just as the dew-drop is apparently 
lost in the ocean ; but as the drop of water is not destroyed 


u the sea, so is there no annihilation of either time t* space. 

Hence the Spirit- World has a fixed locality ; has ma^ rtudes 
and proportions ; has qualities and properties ; has syst-Ti and 
arrangement ; has axis, diameters, and revolutions ; has a sun 
and a firmament ; has evenings and mornings, or periods of re- 
pose and action among its inhabitants ; has its position fixed in 
the mighty multitude of solar systems or universes which roll 
in the depths of immensity ! But I will not now dwell upon the 
magnificent truths which unfold before me ; (I refer the read- 
er, who would follow me in these investigations, to forthcom- 
ing volumes of " The Great Harmonia ;) but here I desire to 
distinctly impress each mind with the truth of this distinction, 
that Heaven is a Condition, but the Spirit-Land is a Locality. 
You may be harmoniously situated, you may be happy, (or 
in heaven,) in the lowliest cottage, or in the fields of nature ; 
but you can not be in the spirit-land, (or in spheres beyond 
this,) unless you undergo a partial or complete change in the 
relations which now subsist between your soul and body. 
Therefore, when a spirit-brother, or any spirit, desires to visit 
some dear one on earth over whom it lovingly watches, it is 
permitted the gratification of doing so, on condition that har- 
mony be established between it and the principle of spiritual 
gravitation. But there is time consumed and space traversed 
in the process of accomplishing such a visitation. 

Almost every one knows the comparative speed of the 
different commercial instrumentalities of our age. The steam- 
boat travels faster than the sloop, the locomotive faster than 
the steamboat, and the electricity on the telegraph wires trav- 
els faster than the locomotive ; and, to continue the compar- 
ison, the human spirit travels faster than electricity, but, yet, 
except in a comparative sense, there is no annihilation of time 
or space, — no destruction of any portion of Eternity or Infini- 
ty ! True, it is impossible to appreciate the existence of an) 
time or space between two cities, eighty English miles apart, 
when conversing through the agency of the magnetic tele- 
graph ; so, also, it is impossible to appreciate any time or dis- 
tance between two friends, ten thousand miles or more apart, 
when conversing through the agency of spiritual insight or 
illumination, or even when communicating through the more 


inferior and rudimental mode of spiritual intercourse, through 
the instrumentality of sounds. This is a truth which I have 
repeatedly seen illustrated. When a person has earnestly 
interrogated his relative, now residing in the Spirit-Land, 
through the prayers and aspirations of his soul — its thoughts 
reaching the listening spirit there, — then, according to the 
principle of spiritual affinity or gravitation, the angel from 
afar, lending attention, would answer the interrogator by dis- 
charging a current of thought upon the swift- winged mag- 
netic elements which pervade the intermediate space, and the 
terrestrial beseecher would thereby receive a fresh inspira- 
tion of sentiments into his own soul, and arise from his devo- 
tions refreshed and happy. And in like manner the earnest 
questioner, through the sounds, also receives a necessarily 
laconic, and often very imperfect, frequently misunderstood, 
answer from the second sphere of human existence, — a re- 
sponse, rapped and spelled out according to the letters of the 

At the conversation above related, of the lady with her 
brother, it is well to remark, that he did not come, as she 
supposed, locally and physically, within the atmospheric en- 
velopment of our planet ; but he sought a position upon the 
plane of his present existence, which would harmonize with 
the current of terrestrial magnetism and electricity of the 
earth, and also with the vital-electrical atmosphere which 
emanated from the "mediums," and the circle in which 
the lady, his sister, was located ; and, from his elevated posi- 
tion, he conversed with her almost, as it were, " face to face/' 
and it seemed to her mind that his spirit was really in the 
room. In a spiritual sensv. he was, indeed, even by her 
side ! and the distance between them was, as it were, anni- 
hilated. Let me not be misunderstood in this : I do not mean 
to say that there are not many, very many beautiful excep- 
tions to this statement ; but the rule, the principle, is, that 
spirits do not com,e within our terrestrial atmosphere when 
they communicate their thoughts to man. Moreover, I have 
observed that the current of thought which a spirit sends to 
earth, generally comes from an oblique direction, and scarcely 
ever at right angles, with the location of the friend, or the 


circle of friends, with whom it is communicating. This truth 
is susceptible of a very rational and philosophical explana 
tion. But I leave, for the present, all scientific considera- 
tions of this particular branch of the subject, as it can only 
benefit those who are already far advanced in spiritual phi- 
losophy and experience ; and of this class the number is, as 
yet, too limited to demand a minute solution of this beauti- 
ful fact. 


The mighty energies and wondrous attributes of the 
Omnipotent Principle are just beginning, as it were, to be 
unrolled and revealed to man ! No ; but man is being refined 
and unfolded, and is becoming more and more capable of 
comprehending the great realities of his own existence and 
of the nature and perfections of God. No more can the 
raging tempest frighten him into the paying of homage to 
some supposed angry Deity ; nor the rolling thunder cause 
him to tremble, and call upon him with its hoarse mutter- 
ings, to burn the innocent lamb for a sacrifice to appease the 
wrath of his god. The deep moan and shrill wail of the 
storm-heaving sea, shall no more drive the free-born soul 
into the worship of unknown gods — the unseen dispensers 
of avenging power ; neither shall he any more bow down 
before unholy altars, when the long-slumbering volcano shall 
pour forth, in tones of thunder, its burning tide. But man 
shall learn to calm the tempest ; already he makes the wind 
waft his ships to foreign shores ! He shall command the 
ocean ; for even now upon its waves he calmly rides in 
palaces ! He shall control the lightnings ; for, behold ! how 
they convey his thoughts from nation to nation, and from 
sphere to sphere! Verily, mankind hath already attained 
unto a high eminence, and, while spirits are manifesting their 
presence and power in our midst, the intelligent and pure- 
minded individual of this era remains wholly unmoved by 
superstitious awe and false adoration. The spiritual world 



may shower upon us its heavenly truths, and the two worlds, 
the material and spiritual, may embrace and unite. Earth 
may partake of the joys and truths of a higher sphere, and be 
joined, with it, into one heavenly kingdom of peace ; but no 
more shall the miracle-expecting multitudes among men sac- 
rifice their reason upon superstition's altar. 

At this point, I am impressed to introduce an apparently 
trifling incident as a gateway opening to a field of still more 
interesting explanations of the phenomena now particularly 
under consideration. I allude to another conversation with 
spirits, through sounds, which also occurred in New York. 
A circle being formed round the table, as usual, a gentleman 
present inquired : 

" Will my father converse with me ?" To his question 
there was no response. And each person asked for their 
friends, in turn, still receiving no reply. Soon the rap- 
pings gave the signal for the alphabet, and a sentence was 
spelled out, directing the young ladies (the mediums) to sing. 
This request being immediately complied with, the communi- 
cations subsequently were free and satisfactory. The direc- 
tion to sing elicited some questioning remarks from the com- 
pany, and one among them queried : " I wonder if spirits 
hear our voices ?" and another said : " I think spirits can not 
be much delighted by such music as mortals make." As 
these remarks were developed by the little circumstance above 
related, so are the following explanations developed by those 
remarks. I will, however, state, parenthetically, that the ob- 
ject of the singing, in this instance, was to establish a passive- 
ness of feeling and a harmony of sentiment in the circle. 
For, as I have already said, the requisite quantity of vital- 
electrical emanations, which constitute the physical condi- 
tions upon which spiritual beings can manifest their presence 
and thoughts, can not be obtained from the mediums unless 
mental tranquillity and a degree of physical quietude be pre- 
served on their part, and also throughout the circle of indi- 
viduals. An answer to the question, "do spirits hear our 
voices ?" may be of immense service to many minds. 

The opinion has long been entertained that man should 
address the Deity with oral prayer — that all gratitude and 


supplication must be pronounced in human language — ihat 
the mouth should give utterance to adoration and praise. 
Audible prayers, both loud and long, are esteemed by many 
persons as alone adequate to arouse and secure the attention 
of God. Now, I do not place any confidence in the supposed 
validity or soul-sincerity of those prayers which are orally 
expressed, according to agreement, before and after pulpit 
discourses in our churches, nor upon any other occasion, 
which fashion may have adopted or usage sanctioned. Yet 
prayer, the mind-uplifting prayer, is not only philosophical, 
but absolutely essential to mental happiness and to the pro- 
gressive purification of the impetuous affections which live 
in the soul's sanctuary. Trut prayer is perpetual! The 
good man prays " without ceasing ;" and there are moments 
when from " out of the abundance of the heart the mouth 
speaketh" glowing desires and the emotions of gratitude ; but 
these gushings forth of the soul's fullness, have no stated 
periods of overflowing, obedient to mere mechanical arrange- 
ments. Nay, they are spontaneous, welling up from the 
eternal fountain within us ! — But formal and ceremonious 
prayer is both vitiating and blasphemous ; the mere habit of 
prayer, though calculated, to discipline thought, is never 
purifying or elevating. Popular theology and fashion term 
it a duty ; philosophy and good sense consider it as a piece 
of mechanism, and a remnant of the ceremonials of the Pa- 
triarchial Age. Secret charities are as heavenly as secret 
injuries are diabolical, — so inward prayer is as refining and 
efficacious, as the merely habitual oral prayers are corrupting 
and immoral. Now, let me be distinctly comprehended. I 
do not repudiate, nor would I suppress, the beautiful and 
honest utterance of inward sentiments when the mouth 
echoes them from out of the soul ; I love to hear the vocal 
breathings of the spirit's desires for truth, and its sweet-toned 
expressions of thankfulness ; such prayers are natural as the 
bursting of a rose-bud in a spring morning — as beautiful in 
the sight of angelic beings as the rivers of truth that ripple 
through their holy-lands — musical as a strain in the universal 
harmonies of nature which reverberate even unto Him the 
Great Author of all harmony. Such prayer, such praise, 


• such worship, is, indeed, unlike the ceremonious and lip-deep 
utterances, (termed prayers,) which too often emanate from 
the modern pulpit, and which I am impressed to denounce as 
being corrupting and demoralizing to both the pronouncer 
and his audience. 

He prays, who, in the very center of his heart, earnestly 
and honestly and continually desires to acquire temperance, 
and patience, and truth, and love to the neighbor, and love 
to God ; and he prays who feels a perpetual gratitude for all 
the blessings he enjoys, for the sun's light and heat, for sum- 
mer and winter, for seed-time and harvest, for the love he is 
enabled to bear to his enemies, and the forgiveness with 
w T hich he can forgive them ; for the love which others conse- 
crate to him ; for the unchangeable manifestation of Divine 
l ove — that love greater than all ; and Divine will — that 
will which is without shadow of turning ; and Divine Wis- 
dom — that wisdom which is universal, — these attributes of the 
Father spreading throughout nature's boundless territories ; 
if he be thus deserving and thus thankful, then that man 
prays " without ceasing" — he prays that holy and glowing 
prayer which the angels love to gaze upon — that living 
prayer which sanctifies his own soul ! Such prayers seldom 
express themselves in words ; they incarnate and imbody 
themselves in righteous deeds ! They are never " full of 
sound and fury, signifying nothing," but impersonate them- 
selves in ihe beautiful form of Charity, clothed with the 
stainless habiliments of chastity, meekness, goodness, virtue, 
and magnanimity. Her voice is low and gentle, and, like 
the violet, she only proclaims her own sweetness by the 
giving forth of her native fragrance ! I am impressed to af- 
firm, that " a wdl-ordered life and a godly conversation" con- 
stitute the only real and truthful prayer that man can utter. 
But here let us understand that the present structure of 
society is not favorable to the manifestation of such gentle 
meekness and magnanimous virtues, particularly in those who 
have inherited an unfavorable organization of body and 
mind to begin with, and, perhaps, have received an education 
no less prejudicial to personal holiness and harmony. Let 
those, therefore, who have been blessed with unearned riches. 


in their physical and spiritual constitutions, do all they can 
to help on the unfortunate to the full and complete expression 
of those inward prayers which lie hidden and undeveloped in 
the most interior sanctuary of the soul ; and let the rich and 
endowed give unto the poor and bereft ! 

The belief is erroneous, that spirits can, at all times, hear 
our voices ; it is a truth, however, that they can always see 
our thoughts. "But," says one who has conversed with 
spirits through the agency of electrical vibrations, " 1 have 
had spelled out to me the following sentence" — state your 
desires orally and ive will respond — " now, what does this 
mean ?" The explanation of this is exceedingly plain : 
there are but very few individuals who can think distinctly 
without the use of words ; they must talk to define an idea 
even to themselves ; and hence it is difficult to get at what 
such individuals would say, or to unravel a clear expression 
from the confusion and disorder of their thoughts. It is only 
the well-developed, well-disciplined, and healthy intellect that 
can, distinctly and positively, impress its thoughts, by an ex- 
ercise of the will-power, without oral expression, upon 
another spirit. And thus it is that, those who can not think 
their desires distinctly are requested, by the spirits, to utter 
them in words, that they may receive a correct impression of 
what the speaker would convey, and also that he himself may 
thus better understand his own question, and comprehend the 
'answer. But we are not to suppose that spirits are with us 
at all times, — always ready to answer when we may choose 
to call upon them, — for, were it so, and man could gain ac- 
cess to them and obtain their counsel upon all occasions, 
through any avenue whatsoever, he would then inevitably 
forget, or refuse, to fill the measure of his own individual ca- 
pacity — he would cease to play his part in the sphere of re- 
sponsibility wherein he is comparatively a Free- Agent — and 
he would sit " all the day idle" waiting for a " Thus saith the 
Lord" — for spiritual guidance — as an easy and agreeable 
substitute for the exercise of his own immortal powers and 
wisdom-attributes — to inform him what to think, where to 
go, and what to do ! 


Interior experience and observation teach me this as a 
principle : When human endeavor and aspiration have 
attained the summit of their ability to accomplish — have 
reached the apex of the mighty pyramid of all material sci- 
ence, philosophy, theology, and morality, which man, in his 
own beautiful strength, can erect and climb, then, upon that 
height, are the deeper spiritual elements of the soul unfolded, 
and, touching the spirit- world, they receive from the angelic 
combination of administering spirits in the second sphere, a 
spiritual philosophy and a divine illumination. In other 
words, when an individual human mind, in its physical and 
moral organization and development, reaches nigh unto the 
spirit-world, then spiritual enlightenment and direction flow 
into the soul's affections and understanding. 

But, in our endeavors to attain this organic harmony and 
moral elevation, let it not be supposed that we are always left 
to strive and struggle alone. No ! Like ourselves, all spirits 
and angels were once men. They have lived in corporeal 
organisms; have walked upon this, or upon some other, earth 
which rolls in space ; have experienced the pleasures and 
vicissitudes — the joys and sorrows — the tears and smiles — of 
this incipient existence. But now, having passed through 
the transformatory process of outer dissolution, which man- 
kind term death, they reside in the spirit-land ; and, in har- 
mony with the immutable laws of progression and develop- 
ment, they have transcended all terrestrial imperfections and 
still they march victoriously onward ! But they who have 
already attained to celestial heights, as well as those who 
have not yet advanced far in the spiritual country, they can 
behold us from where they are, and in our evening medita- 
tions ; in our profoundest slumbers ; in our daily occupations ; 
in our " circles" of fraternal love ; the spirit-friends, whom 
our souls most attract, come to us and breathe their pure and 


beautiful sentiments into our souls. And when, by reading 
our thoughts, they see us in trouble or in danger, it is reason- 
able to anticipate the reception (that is, if the vessels of our 
minds will admit the influx) of some spiritual assistance and 
direction from the angel's home. Surely, Christians will 
remember one forcible illustration of this truth. — the beautiful 
account of how the scales fell from Saul's eyes ! A protect- 
ing spirit, an angel-messenger, watching the moment when 
the warrior's soul .would admit of it, sent into his moral per- 
ceptions a current of divine elements, which not only made 
him see the error of his course, but turned his thoughts on 
high ! And there is, also, another prominent and beautiful 
instance of spiritual guidance recorded in religious history : 
it is related that " the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph 
in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the child and his mother, 
and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee 
word." Now, the majority of those who believe, because 
they have been educated so to do, in this circumstance, 
though it is said to have occurred centuries ago, will not give 
credence to similar, and often more complete, spiritual mani- 
festations daily happening in our very midst. That principle 
of Nature which could develop spiritual intercourse in past 
times, is surely capable of doing the same thing in this era ; 
for there must be unity and system in the operation of God's 
unchangeable laws. If it be said, by some objector, that the 
circumstance above alluded to can not be referred to na- 
ture's laws ; that it was accomplished by an especial com- 
mand of God ; then I remind the reader that there is nothing 
outside of, or superior to, that stupendous organization 01 
matter and mind which I am impressed to term, Nature. 
Neither are we to suppose that the Deity will do for one inhab- 
itant of earth, what he will not do for another ; because he is 
*' no respecter of persons," and because, also, according to the 
affirmation of the highest authority among Christians, " he is 
without variableness, neither shadow of turning !" There- 
fore, upon the broad and immovable foundation of Nature 
and her laws, (which laws are the very elements of God's 
will.) we should rest the conviction, that spirits can see our 
thoughts, and that they do, sometimes, approach us to remove 


the scales of superstition and error from our eyes — thus 
directing our thoughts toward the ' Eternal Mind who will 
hear a sigh's low music 'mid bursting praises that ascend up- 
ward from a thousand realms '! 


Under this head, I proceed to briefly and analytically con- 
sider the remark of the gentleman who queried as to whether 
" spirits could delight in the music which mortals make ?" 
I am impressed to reply, that spirits do experience pleasure 
in beholding the harmony and other effects which music 
creates in our souls ; would seem, at first glance, that, 
being pleased, the'spirits must, therefore, hear our voices. 
This requires an explanation. Spirits can hear our voices, 
and we can hear their tones ; but the question arises—" how 
can this be possible ?" And the answer is, that the material 
senses have corresponding internal and spiritual senses. We 
do not see with the eye, with the mere visible organ — but by 
a principle of spiritual^ perception which, as a portion of the 
mind, lives in the nerves of the eye as the soul lives in the 
body. So the external mechanism and structure of the ear 
are an exact impersonation, so to speak, of the principles of 
hearing. And so with all the other senses. The scientific 
world does not sanction these facts because medical men 
know nothing about them. Materialism characterizes the 
sciences of this age ; and hence it is not to be expected that 
the spiritual truths, w T hich remain in Nature's casket as yet 
unlocked to men of popular science and learning, should, 
when revealed, be recognized and acknowledged by them ; 
every new-found treasure the materialistic intellect rejects, 
but it is not less a gem of truth, destined yet to shine in the 
diadem of knowledge ! And, though the oculist and the 
optician of to-day may not concur in the fact here disclosed, 
we rest perfectly assured that this philosophy of the internal 
senses is recognized by reason, and sanctioned by nature, 
and these are high authorities. 


When spirits speak to us, they address our interior and 
spiritual sense of hearing. And when we behold spirits we 
exercise the internal principle of perception or seeing. It 
not unfrequently occurs, that an individual thinks his out- 
ward senses addressed when, like Saul, he hears a voice pro- 
nouncing his name, apparently, from the depths of the air. 
And when spirits have been seen, the beholder is apt to be- 
lieve that the vision was confined or addressed to the out- 
ward sense of seeing — so distinct and self-evident is a real 
manifestation of spiritual presence. We can, however, be 
easily deceived with regard to the seeing of spirits, because 
of the fact that the mind is itself capable of combining and 
re-combining thoughts and imperfectly remembered circum- 
stances, personages and scenery, in a new and involuntary 
manner. And, again, the superficial elements, and the un- 
quieted thoughts of the mind are sometimes, even uncon- 
sciously to the individual, elaborated, by the dreamy action 
of the will, into different human forms and faces, bursting 
out of intensely black and gray ragged clouds, having all the 
semblance of an imperfect spiritual manifestation. There 
are always to be found minds of this description, differing one 
from another in that the forms which they thus manufacture, 
as it were, are not always beautiful and heavenly. The 
mind which dwells on celestial and pure things, will see 
seraph faces, whilst the disturbed individual, recalling the 
lessons of his theology, will often behold hideous-visaged 
demons, the conjurations of his own brain. Among nearly 
all religious sects are evident indications that spurious spirit- 
seeing has prevailed to considerable extent. The votaries of 
St. Vitus were frequently thrown into paroxysms of enthusi- 
asm and ecstacy by a kind of reckless indulgence of the spir- 
itual sentiments amounting almost to religious voluptuous- 
ness ; and the consequences were conspicuously indicated in 
the professions which they made with regard to the seeing of 
their departed friends and acquaintances. Now, I do not 
undertake to deny that the early disciples of St. Vitus some- 
times perceived the forms of their friends whose spirits had 
passed from earth. Neither do I doubt the truthfulness of 
many similar profession a nong the spiritually-minded " Shak- 


ers" of our day and generation ; but I am impressed to con- 
sider a large majority of the spiritual perceptions and com- 
munications alleged by different minds to have been enjoyed 
by them, during their moments of religious excitement, as 
the results principally of cerebrial agitation. I have stood 
by the bed-side of the disturbed dreamer, have watched the 
thoughts of the fanatic, have read the wild fancies of the 
maniac, and have painfully traced the bewildering imaginings 
of the inebriate ; and have thus particularly and critically 
examined, with my spiritual perceptions, the mental condi- 
tions and phenomena which are developed by duplex insanity, 
monomania, delirium tremens, &c. ; and I can truthfully 
affirm, that the objects, localities, scenery, and personages 
which the victims of these maladies profess to see and en- 
counter, vehemently vindicating their immediate presence 
and reality, are all of the same class of mental delusion, and 
are absolutely nothing more than unconscious elaborations of 
the surcharged brain, which contains all the germinal essences 
of the internal or thinking principle. An explanation of these 
cerebrial projections of objects and scenery, I defer until I 
come to an interior analyzation of the psychological phenom- 
ena which characterized the mental state of Baron Sweden- 

But here let us discriminate between what is real and what 
is unreal in the perception of spiritual beings. To the healthy 
and discriminating mind there is no confounding of a sub- 
stantial vision of super-mundane personages and scenery with 
the dreamy hallucinations of the disturbed intellect. When 
the interior senses of ' he mind distinctly see a spirit or hear 
its serene, rich, friendly tones, it is impossible for the thus 
favored individual to be mistaken. If, however, as it some- 
times happens, we get only an imperfect glimpse of some 
guardian-spirit that seeks our recognition and welfare, — and if 
we can not be absolutely certain and honest in our convic- 
tions of that angel-presence, and have not a perfect assurance 
that the vision was no illusion, — then it is wisdom to keep our 
understandings open to the reception of more substantial 
evidence, to the end that the mind may not be conducted 
into regions of uncertain hypothesis and imagination. A 


truthful and beautiful instance of spirit-seeing was originally 
reported in one of our journals. It well and touchingly illus- 
trates the naturalness and self-evidentness of spiritual insight, 
quickened in this instance, as it sometimes is, by material 
attenuation consequent upon disease ; which attenuation 
partially emancipating the spirit from its earthly temple, ren- 
ders it more susceptible to the impression and perception of 
the presence of guardian angels. 

" A little girl, in a family of my acquaintance," says the 
narrator, "a lovely and precious child, lost her mother at an 
age too early to fix the loved features in her remembrance. 
She was beautiful ; and as the bud of her heart unfolded, it 
seemed as if won by that mother's prayers to turn instinct- 
ively heavenward. The sweet, conscientious, and prayer- 
loving child, was the idol of the bereaved family. But she 
faded away early. She would lie upon the lap of the friend 
who took a mother's kind care of her, and, winding one 
wasted arm about her neck, would say, ' Now tell me about 
my mamma !' And when the oft-told tale had been repeated, 
she would ask softly, ' Take me into the parlor ; I want to see 
my mamma !' The request was never refused ; and the 
affectionate sick child would lie for hours, gazing on her 
mother's portrait. But 

" Pale and wan she grew, and weakly — 
Bearing all her pains so meekly, 
That to them she still grew dearer, 
As the trial -hour grew nearer." 

That hour came at last, and the weeping neighbors assem- 
bled to see the little child die. The dew of death was already 
on the flower, as its life-sun was going down. The little 
chest heaved faintly, — spasmodically. 

' Do you know me, darling!' sobbed close in her ear, the 
voice that was dearest ; but it awoke no answer. All at 
once a brightness, as if from the upper world, burst over the 
child's colorless countenance. The eyelids flashed open ; 
and the lips parted ; the wan, curdling hands flew up, in the 
little one's last impulsive effort, as she looked piercingly into 
the far above. 

44 tru:h and mystery 

'Mother!' she cried, with surprise and transport in her 
tone — and passed with that breath into her mother's bosom. 

Said a distinguished divine, who stood by that bed of joy- 
ous death. ' If I had never believed in the ministration of 
departed ones before, I could not doubt it now !' ' : 

Thus the spirits whom our souls most attract, often draw 
nigh to us, even when through the grossness of our material 
senses we see them not, and they do " delight in the music 
we make," for they take pleasure in whatever influences us 
to harmony, tranquillity and happiness. It is not that the 
words we sing, or the sounds we awaken, can so charm those 
who listen to celestial strains ; but the spirit of those words, 
those sounds, live in us, and our guardian spirits love to 
arouse that musical element in our minds, thereby, in a meas- 
ure, dissipating the outward discords which surround and act 
upon us on earth. Hence, when a circle of friends meet for 
spiritual communications, and find it difficult to get responses 
to their well-intended questionings, then let them unite their 
voices and "sing," let them be cheerful together, and the 
effects thereof, quieting disturbed minds, will delight the 
attending spirits near ; and such unanimity of feeling and 
sentiment will, temporarily at least, harmonize the human 
with the divine. And if we would but carry thence the 
principles of music into our homes, — into our social, politi- 
cal and religious institutions, — and thus render human society 
as a musical instrument, I know its chords would frequently 
be touched by spirit-fingers, and the angel -tones thereon awak- 
ened would sweetly proclaim the kingdom of heaven on earth! 

There have been always, in all ages of the world, some 
slight, exceedingly obscure, and fragmentary manifestations 
of invisible and spiritual power ; for many individuals as well 
as various sects have received what they conceived to be 
spiritual revelations from the unseen, and to the majority of 
minds, the mysterious and uncertain world. But there never 
has been presented to mankind, in any one era of human 
progress previous to this century, any thing like a clear, con- 
sistent, and incontestable demonstration of spiritual presence 
and influence ; and the explanation why mankind, in no pre- 


vious age, have witnessed those undeniable evidences of im- 
mortality and spiritual realities, which are manifested and 
beginning to be recognized in the present century, is this : 
mankind in general, with but few exceptions, have never 
ventured the exercise of their reason principle upon myste- 
rious and super-mundane occurrences, but have repulsed 
every attempt on the part of a spirit to manifest its real ex- 
istence and mission to the earth's inhabitants, with the most 
suffocating skepticism or fanatical superstition. It is surely 
very evident, that the fear of evil-spirits has hitherto been 
much more general and powerful than the love of God. The 
fear of a fabulous devil is, even at this advanced period of 
civilization, much stronger, in timid and undeveloped minds, 
than the love of truth and Deity! And the consequence is, 
that, whenever the inhabitants of the spirit- world strive to 
manifest themselves to the inhabitants of the natural world, 
in which we live, the pioneers from that superior country to 
this comparatively isolated planet, are deprived an entrance 
into our homes and communities, — into our affections and 
understandings, — by the superstition and skepticism of the 
people ; a people made thus skeptical and superstitious by 
ignorance and error ; they are afraid to receive the spirits in 
their homes, lest they be not angels from heaven, but agents 
of the supposed king of darkness, who has mythologically 
been invested with such terrific power and influence. Skep- 
ticism and superstition are the legitimate offsprings of ignor- 
ance and theological error, — and this remark applies with 
equal force and truthfulness to all Christian and heathen 
forms of religious worship and education. But the time has 
now arrived, when the two worlds — the spiritual and the 
natural — are prepared to meet and embrace each other on 
the middle-ground of mental freedom and progression. And 
those who ?xe most advanced in individual refinement, har- 
mony, and spiritual truth, will gladly receive and philosophi- 
cally intopret every communication w r hich may emanate 
from the founts above. 


Aside from the religious want of the age, there is still 
another reason why these manifestations and demonstrations 
of spiritual existence and power are becoming so general at 
this particular time, — it is this : There has never before ex- 
isted upon this earth so much mental, and moral, and religious 
freedom, — never so much actual goodness and universal 
love, — we have grown almost to the spiritual world ; and 
the period even now appears brief when humanity will realize 
its nearness to, and friendship for,, the spirit-land ; and man 
shall aspire to be like unto the angels ! And while we are 
looking for a full realization of these high convictions and 
sublime realities, let us " fear not to entertain strangers" 
either in the form of personages, thoughts, or philosophies, 
because "they may be angels," or messengers of truth, as 
was once discovered by an oriental patriarch, whose fame is 
recorded in the Primitive History. 

These reflections and admonitions are prompted by the 
widely-acknowledged fact, that in various portions of the 
world — especially in America, at this present — there are 
many indications of the presence and influence of spiritual 
beings or agencies, possessing intelligence and manifesting 
extraordinary power over material objects and substances. 
Many persons believe these sounds and manifestations to be 
the effect of some ingeniously-arranged machinery ; others 
believe that they are produced by electrical discharges from 
magnetic batteries, managed by good clairvoyants to answer 
such oral or mental questions as only spiritually enlightened 
clairvoyants could perceive and solve ; and there is still 
another class of persons who believe them to be the experi- 
ments and caprices of satanic agencies. Now, whether all 
the singular and mysterious developments ever actually oc- 
curred at Rochester in the manner alleged by those who 
claim to have witnessed and investigated them, I am not im- 


pressed to say, (for I consider the facts already sufficiently 
demonstrated to the public understanding ;) nor have I evej 
been moved to seek any information with regard to the 
causes of those declared manifestations prior to the writing 
of this chapter. And I had never witnessed any of these 
things previous to last spring, when, although much engaged 
in. New York, I was impressed to visit the village of Strat- 
ford, Connecticut, for the express purpose of observing, with 
both my natural and spiritual perceptions, a variety of mys- 
terious noises and exciting phenomena, occurring there, at a 
private residence. And now I desire the reader to follow 
me in the ensuing investigations. 

First — As to the facts. Every consistent step was taken, 
by the proprietor of the house, to satisfy many of his particular 
neighbors and a few of the influential citizens of the village, 
that, at least, a great number of the sounds and external appear- 
ances were not produced by human hands or instrumentalities. 
Among many other and equally strange things which occur- 
red there, the members of the family and other individuals 
have witnessed, (though invariably subsequent to the arrange- 
ment,) the grouping of various figures, made from articles of 
clothing taken mysteriously from the wardrobes and trunks ; 
they have also seen books thrown about ; nails, keys, and 
other portable things belonging to the house, falling in their 
midst ; they have had black crape tied on the door-latch, and 
the looking-glasses covered with sheets, as is customary, in 
some families, when a corpse is in the house ; but the most 
interesting and, I think, important phenomena, have bee^ + he 
writing of various unknown and apparently insignificant char- 
acters which have been impressed upon the walls of the 
chambers, and upon the piazza and elsewhere. Now, there 
were in this house two individuals who seemed to be partic- 
ularly and inseparably connected with almost every thing 
which had been, and was being, developed — I allude to a 
young girl and her brother. A higher class of manifestations 
usually attended the former ; but the latter — the boy — seemed 
to some persons to be maliciously and unnecessarily torment- 
ed by evil spirits. Because his clothing was sometimes sud- 
denly torn : his cap, shoes, &c . were mysteriously concealed 


at times ; and on one occasion he was suspended by a rope 
to a tree ; he would be startled by loud raps suddenly sound- 
ing under his footsteps as he ascended or descended the 
stairs ; and he was made sick and delirious by fright and 

Second — As to the origin of these facts. The evidence to 
an unenlightened mind that many of these sounds and appear- 
ances were not produced by human hands, or by any mun- 
dane agencies, must necessarily consist in what was discover- 
ed to be a fact, that it was and still is impossible to trace their 
primary causes to any earthly source. Of course, no one 
will pretend to affirm the impossibility of there being any hu- 
man agency, in the performance of some of these mysterious 
feats ; nay, on the contrary, it is consistent with reason to 
believe, that almost every thing developed in that house, could 
have been caused, under favorable circumstances, By the con- 
certed plans and inventions of some members of the family. 
But when the existing circumstances did not favor such con. 
trivances, plans, and arrangements, and when the family were 
assembled all together in one room, — it being ascertained that 
the domestics were honest, and for the most part ignorant of 
what had occurred and was occurring, — then, should a book 
be thrown from an opposite side of the room, or a full, vibrat- 
ing, concussive sound be made in the upper rooms, or a win- 
dow-pane be broken from the inside, or should the legs of the 
boy's pantaloons be suddenly torn in strips, and he be tied by 
those strips to the chair in which he was sitting, without his 
knowledge, and while, as it is alleged, his hands were grasped 
by his mother, — I say, under such stubborn circumstances, 
(which render human agency impossible,) should the above- 
mentioned phenomena occur, as in truth they did, then thb 
only inference is, that those things were caused by an invisi- 
ble intelligence and potency. 

Of the laws of mind and matter, the world is comparative- 
ly ignorant ; and the principles which govern the inhabitants 
of the spirit-land are still less understood by the generality of 
mankind. In the midst of all this ignorance, the desire for 
knowledge moves many minds to ask these great Questions : 


" What is a spirit ?" and apprehending spirit to be an intan- 
gible and an immaterial substance, such minds inquire, "how 
is it possible for spirit to move inorganic bodies and material 
substances ?" Again, " why do spirits only visit certain lo- 
calities, and intimately associate their manifestations only 
with certain individuals?" "Why are these manifestations 
not in all places, and with all persons ?" These questions 
demand, and are capable of receiving, reasonable and philo- 
sophical answers, — to furnish which I will now proceed to 
state what I know of these things, both from long and unbro- 
ken investigations into the laws which govern matter and 
mind, and from recent impressions which I have received 
concerning what occurred at the house of the gentleman in 
Stratford at the time of my visits there. 

1. A spirit is no immaterial substance ; on the contrary, the 
spiritual organization is composed of matter — such as we see, 
feel, eat, smell, and inhale — in a very high state of refine- 
ment and attenuation. The spiritual body is vastly more 
potential than the bone and muscle which its elements can 
so readily and powerfully move while inhabiting the earthly 
body ; neither is it impalpable or intangible, except to the 
material senses ; for, to the spiritual senses, — which senses are 
opened by entering the superior condition, and, generally 
speaking, at the moment of death, — the spiritual organization 
is a more tangible, palpable, and substantial piece of reality 
than it is possible for the unenlightened or materialistic intel- 
lect to imagine. 

2. That spirit can come into contact with inorganic and 
material substances, is proved by every man's experience. 
Railroads and steamboats are made and managed by spirit. 
Suppose you desire to lift a weight ; what is it that performs 
the labor ? I answer, it is your spirit ! it is that spiritual prin- 
ciple within you which thinks, feels, loves, and reasons — it is 
your interior self ! and if the reader will reflect upon and 
discover how it is that his spirit can raise a given weight, 
he will receive a reasonable and philosophical answer to the 
question under consideration. First, your spirit, which is a 
fine organization of fine materials, desires to raise the weight 
referred to. Now, I will describe to you the various invisi- 



ble agencies or instrumentalities which are engaged within 
your organism to accomplish this purpose :-. — The first agent 
is your spirit — the second your vital-magnetism — the third 
your vital-electricity — the fourth your nerves — the fifth 
your muscles — and the sixth is the bone which, by acting 
in concert with the above-named agents, succeeds in raising 
the weight. Many unscientific persons suppose that muscle 
does all the labor which they perform ; while, in truth, mus- 
cle is only one of the agents which the indwelling spirit em- 
ploys to do its will. Since, therefore, it is demonstrated that 
human spirit can come in contact with inorganic matter, 
while living in the earthly body, it remains no longer an un- 
philosophical conviction that spirits from the spirit-land are 
capable, by employing some invisible intermediate agencies, 
of approaching and moving objects here which our material 
eyes can recognize. But it is asked — " How can a spirit 
move a table, or a chair, or a candlestick, and guide the mov- 
ing article to some particular locality, without the use of 
bones, muscles, nerves, &c, &c, as a human spirit can do 
while in the corporeal body ?" 

The answer to this question will cover the whole ground 
occupied by the following inquiry — " Why do spirits only 
visit certain localities and individuals, thus seeming to man- 
ifest exclusiveness and partiality ?" And I proceed to state, 
that the two individuals already mentioned, as members of 
the family I visited in Stratford, Conn., the young girl and 
her brother, were both. exceedingly surcharged, alternately, 
at the time the manifestations were being developed, with 
vital-magnetism and vital-electricity. Magnetism, which is 
positive, and electricity, which is negative, would at different 
times preponderate, each having the ascendency in their sys- 
tems. I was one day ascending, with the boy, a flight of 
,tairs, when suddenly there came a quick, loud rap under his 
left foot, which frightened him exceedingly, because he sup- 
posed the sound was made by a spirit, and which he was ed- 
ucated to believe to be an evil spirit. But I instantly per- 
ceived that his system, like the torpedo eel, had discharged a 
small volume or current of vital electricity from the sole of 
the foot, which electricity, 'by its coming in sudden contact 


with the elecfricily of the atmosphere, produced the quick 
concussion which we heard. When magnetism preponderated 
in the systems of these individuals, then nails, keys, books, &c, 
would fly toward them ; and, when electricity preponderated, 
then these various articles would move in an opposite direc- 
tion. But I observed that, in many instances, the articles of 
furniture, &c, which were disturbed, were first moved from 
their proper locations by the instigation of attending spirits, — 
the direction in which they subsequently glided along being 
almost invariably determined by the electrical or magnetical 
condition of the sister or the brother at that particular time. 
And here let me remark, that I have heard instances of mis- 
chief cited, as occurring in this house, in evidence of satanic 
agency, which I now discover to have been sometimes accom- 
plished by the youth in his sport, — sometimes by electrical 
discharges and magnetic attractions, — and sometimes by the 
almost unpardonable mischievousness of persons unknown to 
the family. " The wanton destruction of property," alleged 
to have taken place on this gentleman's premises, is referable, 
in most cases, to emanations of vital-electricity seeking its 
equilibrium in the external atmosphere. In this manner, win- 
dow-panes were broken, and various small articles injured. 
In Woodbridge, N. J., some few years since, a young lady 
was affected with a disease w r hich gave rise to similar phe- 
nomena. Mysterious sounds were heard in her presence — 
window-panes were frequently broken in her vicinity — and, 
in like manner, door-panels were burst out, sometimes falling 
toward her, sometimes from her, and, especially, were quick, 
concussive, and very loud sounds heard under her feet as she 
ascended a flight of stairs. Ultimately, however, the mys- 
terious phenomena frightened her into an illness which cured 
the malady. Here we are reminded that, though not neces- 
sarily a diseased state, certain conditions of the body and 
mind are essential to produce the sounds through which spir- 
its now at times communicate — taking advantage, as they 
do, of the electrical and magnetical atmosphere thus emitted, 
to move articles and even to converse ; and this explains why 
these mysterious man ; festatiom are confined to particular 
persons and localities. 


I now proceed to explain how spirits can move a table or 
other inorganic substances : — A spirit, without possessing 
ray of the grossness of the earthly form, is yet organized in 
. ts principles and functions precisely as we are in this life ; 
and when it — a spirit — desires to move a table, (by way ot 
manifesting its nearness,) it concentrates its own magnetic 
and positive elements so as to take hold, as it were, of the 
magnetism of the atmosphere. In like 'manner, this atmos- 
pherical magnetism takes hold of the electricity of the air, anc 
the latter is then concentrated upon the article which it is the 
spirit's design to move. Atmospherical magnetism and elec- 
tricity are, therefore, the nerves and muscles which spirits 
employ when manifesting their presence to the material 
senses of believing as well as skeptical individuals. Hence 
when "rappings" are heard, and when it is certain that no 
mischievous or designing person is producing them by way of 
imitation, then it is perfectly reasonable to conclude, as has 
been hitherto explained, that a friendly spirit from the spirit- 
land is producing electrical, rolling concussions upon some 
material substance, through the intermediate agencies of ter- 
restrial magnetism and electricity. The modus operandi of 
these phenomena I design not now to detail ; because, at 
present, it is deemed sufficient for mankind to know that it is 
both naturally and philosophically possible for spirits to ap- 
proach and influence heavy and gross bodies of matter. 

Of the two mediums we are considering, the boy, Henry, is 
naturally nervous ; but the young lady, his sister, has been 
rendered so by the strange and unexpected sounds and phe- 
nomena that have frequently attended her steps and move- 
ments. The parents have received the testimony of young 
Henry, I believe, as being literally true on all occasions ; but 
I have discovered that he frequently failed to discriminate, 
during certain moments of mental agitation, between the 
sounds and effects which he himself made, and those sounds 
which were produced by a spiritual presence. On one occa- 
sion he was found with a rope passed under his arms and 
suspended to the limb of a tree. When removed from that 
position, he related that he " screamed at the top of his voice." 
But it was ascertained, that had he in reality done so, the 


domestics, who had been near the spot, must have heard him. 
Now, it was not with the intention to deceive that he made 
this declaration, — he really supposed that he had "called 
aloud" — as I discovered when viewing the circumstance from 
my superior condition ; at which time I also learned, that, to 
control the boy from effecting some premeditated impru- 
dence, a spirit near him, taking advantage of the electrical 
state of his system, actually made him unconsciously instru- 
mental in tying himself to the tree ; and in order that he 
might not escape and accomplish his previously conceived 
design, the guardian spirit impressed hirr. to feel fright, and 
to think that he called for help till such time as it was deemed 
prudent to release him. Those of my readers who are at all 
acquainted with the recent discoveries in pneumatological or 
psychological science, or with the symptoms and effects con- 
sequent upon an incipient somnambulic state, will readily 
understand how one mind can cause another to feel and be- 
hold things which in reality have no existence. And in like 
manner, as one individual can cause another to experience 
sensations which are merely imagined by the operator, so 
spirits can and do effect certain impressible minds to think 
they say and perform things while they are, in fact, silent 
and inactive. Spirits can also impress such minds to think 
they see that which is not, and again not to see that which 
really is. For instance — it has been affirmed by the parents 
of Henry, and by others visiting at their house, that many 
articles have been instantly and invisibly carried from one 
place to another in the room where they were sitting, and 
that the articles so moved were rendered invisible while be- 
ing conducted through the air. Now, although the facts 
alleged are true, the mode is not. The spirit or spirits that 
produced the phenomena were very careful to so act upon 
the minds of those in the room as to render it absolutely im- 
possible for them to have realized that the articles were pas- 
sing through the air, or even to realize that their own mental 
attention had been in the least diverted or disturbed ; they 
unknowingly yielded to the silent power of mind acting upon 
mind ; and thus many things are asserted as facts by this 
family and other individuals associated with similar phe- 


nomena which are, in reality, nothing more than mental dis- 

It will be long ere the science of spiritual intercourse will 
be so thoroughly and universally understood as to render 
great and sad mistakes of rare occurrence. But to the end 
that a less deplorable state of ignorance, with regard to these 
things, may be speedily brought about, the philosopher should 
study to acquaint himself with the temperament of those who 
are in a fit physical and mental condition to truthfully receive 
spiritual communications ; and also he should seek to under- 
stand the general bodily and mental state of those whose 
electrical sphere is adapted to the most inferior species of 
spiritual manifestations — such as the moving of inorganic 
bodies, &c. &c. Neither is it right for the investigator to 
believe too quickly, or too fully, the things which excitable 
persons relate ; because some minds are naturally inclined to 
exaggerate or enlarge upon every thing which they may feel, 
see, or hear; and, again, another class of minds are so acted 
upon by their superstitious feelings and religious education, 
or by the temptation to make out a favorite doctrine or hypo- 
thesis, as to even unconsciously misrepresent the character 
and extent of their mysterious experiences, and likewise the 
events which they derive from the page of History. 

We have now established one point in .[.'_ quiry — 
namely, that the phenomena which have occurred at the 
residence of the gentleman in Stratford, have been in the 
majority of instances primarily produced by spiritual beings. 
But the question, at this point, arises : — " Why do spirits visit 
mankind in this apparently insignificant manner ?" This in- 
teresting interrogation was answered in the following singu- 
lar characters, which were distinctly drawn upon a turnip, 
which, on the 15th day of the month of March, 1850, fell at 
the feet of a gentleman who was, at that time, visiting the 
aforesaid house in Stratford, with a desire to investigate these 
wonderful things. The following is an exact copy of the form, 
though not of the size, of the characters; which, however, must 
not be regarded as a style of writing existing in the spiritual 
world, but only as characters or signs especially designed and 
pre-eminently calculated to arrest public attention on earth. 


They are, therefore, entirely arbitrary, — having no affinity, in 
either their grammatical structure or interior signification, 
with any ancient or oriental language that ever existed 
among men. They are rather " signs of the times" which 
maifkind may confidently expect to realize when external or 
terrestial conditions are favorable to their development. 

Z X— E 

When I first saw these figures I recognized them as being, 
to a certain extent, analogous to some characters* which I 
read upon a scroll which was presented to my mind on the 
seventh of March, 1843. The interpretation of the above, 
according to my interior impressions, is literally as follows : 
" You may expect a variety of things from our society." Here 
is an answer to the inquiry, respecting the object of spiritual 
visitings to present such trifling manifestations. The spirits 

* When these characters are seen, the questions can not but arise — " How were 
these letters written ?" — " How can spirits write ?" — " Where do they get their 
' pen, ink, and paper,' and desk ?" These interrogatories have been put to me by 
very many honest minds, and I will, therefore, furnish the answer in all truth and 

When spirits make or write characters, for the purpose of arresting public at- 
tention, they do not employ those instrumentalities which we use, but adopt alto- 
gether different agencies. In the first place, they concentrate a current of mental 
or vital electricity upon some particular substance — it may be the wall, the piazza, 
an article of clothing, or a piece of paper ; whatever substance they select, (which 
is electrifiable by virtue of surrounding physical conditions,) is acted upon by 
their will-power, electro-chemically , and the characters are precipitated, like the 
sunlight upon the daguerreotype plate, forming a kind of electrotype impression* 
These impressions are, at first,- very indistinct and shadowy • but immediately grow 
more clear and permanent. I have known of characters, or written impressions, 
being made, electro-chemically, upon a young lady's arm, but which disappeared in 
a few days. Practical chemists will understand my meaning when I say, that 
spirits, (when they themselves write,) produce their marks and figures in ac- 
cordance with the principles of electro-metallurgy. This term the scientific elec- 
trician will also comprehend. But the general reader will more readily apprehend 
my meaning, when I say, that spirits impress writing upon the wall just as 
daguerreotype impressions are made upon the chemically prepared suiface of a 
plate. In this manner, I am impressed, " mene, mene, tekel, urHARSlN , ' were 
written by spirits on the wall at Belshazzar'b sumptuous and royal banquet. 
See Daniel v. 25. 


desire to represent " a variety of things ;" and it is distinctly 
obvious, tha. + , little things will arrest the general attention 
and awaken a more universal investigation, while some great 
development, which could only be addressed to the few intel- 
lects, might astound but not convince the thoughtless multi- 
tudes, who would at once pronounce it " past finding out, 
and become superstitious. So anxious were the spirits to im- 
press the above sentence upon the minds of the members of the 
family, that the same was written, repeatedly, sometimes upon 
the boy's handkerchief, on his pantaloons, his coat, cap, &c. ; 
and it was always traced with the greatest accuracy and pre- 
cision — indicating an interior signification. 

But again and again it is naturally asked : — " What is the 
object of all these manifestations ?" The proper answers are 
repeatedly given by the spirits. Thus, on the 31st day of 
March, 1850, was found traced upon a step of the piazza, 
the following : — 

e x— e 

which, being literally interpreted, according to my interior 
acquaintance with these characters, would read thus : " Our 


thoughts." Also, on the end of the same piazza was dis- 
tinctly written the word, " Selah." And directly under- 
neath this word were the characters which follow — 

X=ZT O 7 

The signification of the word "Selah" has never been 
decided by biblical commentators ; but they generally believe 
it to mean a term in music, because it frequently occurs at 
the termination of certain paragraphs in the Psalms of David 
as recorded in the Primitive History. But the spirits used 
it in the sublimest sense which our most exalted imaginations 
can affix to the following words : "Respond" — " Listen" — 
" Reciprocate" — "Echo," — meaning that they — the spirits — 
desire to be rightly heard, rightly understood, and cordially 


or fraternally responded to ; or, in other woras, the inhabitants 
of the Spirit- World desire the earth's inhabitan/s to be ONE 
with them! — they desire to hear a "response" — an "echo" — 
to their goodness and heavenly principles among the working 
multitudes and in the moral and intellectual labyrinths of 
humanity ! The characters beneatl the word, " Selah," being 
spiritually interpreted, read : — " Different mediums commu- 
nicate, from our Society, thoughts unto you/' 

On the same day, the following characters were discov- 
ered, electrically impressed upon Henry's coat : 


Which signifies, that, to their " various thoughts unto 
you, they desire a response — an echo," — or, they would 
hear the blissful harmonies whjch they comprehend and en- 
joy, echoed in the souls and habitations of men, like a sound 
of music from unseen instruments ! 

But the most perfect and satisfactory communication 
among all those which were made, at that house, from the 
10th to the 31st of March, 1850, was traced thus. — 

E X 

And this mysterious sentence, being translated into our 
language, according to my interior impressions, reads : — " A 
high society of Angels desire, through the agency of 
another and a more inferior society, to communicate in 
various ways to the earth's inhabitants." 

This last message, with many others, was communicated 
on Sunday the 31st of March. But the parents, not knowing 
the meaning of these things, and being exceedingly agitated 
by the speech of ignorant and prejudiced people, also fearing 
the effects which, for want of a proper appreciation, under- 
standing, and management of these visitations, had been 
wrought upon the son and daughter, deemed it expedient, for 
the sake of quiet in the house and to arrest the scandal of the 
village, to remove them (the children) for a time, a short dis 


tance from home ; and, accordingly, on the subsequent Mon- 
day morning, the boy and girl were sent into the adjoining 
town to remain a few days. On the Monday following their 
departure, I again visited the house in question. I arrived 
there nearly three quarters of an hour before Henry's return 
from the country with his step-father, who had that morning 
gone to bring him home. During his (the youth's) absence, 
no very interesting manifestations occurred ; and it seems 
that the parents, though desirous of having the boy with them, 
yet dreaded his presence — fearing it would induce more 
communications and mysterious sounds, which they termed 
" annoyances," to occur. On that same morning, however, a 
short time previous to my reaching the residence, a little 
child, the youngest daughter in the family, as she was going 
to school, observed a piece of paper, recently written upon, — 
ths characters not being dry, — lying on the ground near the 
gate ; she ran back with it to her mother, who handed the 
manuscript to me soon after I was seated in the room ; and 
the following was the current of thoughts which flowed into 
my mind, as a partial translation thereof: — 

" Fear not, when lie returns, fear not, all danger is o'er ; 
We came, we disturbed thy house, but shall do so no more. 
Believe us not evil, nor good, till we prove 
Our speech to humanity — our language of love." 

The characters made upon this paper* resembled the writ- 
ten Chinese language in some degree ; but yet, on comparing 
the former with the latter, the difference was distinctly 
obvious. The communication was especially designed to 
calm the anxieties of the parents in regard to their fears for 
Henry, who had once been made nervously ill from agitation, 
(this was the only "danger" referred to in the above mes- 
sage ;) and it also conveyed to them the wholesome counsel 
to suspend all judgment concerning the "evil" or "good- 
ness" of those from whom these things emanated until the 
spirits themselves should demonstrate to the family and world 
their character and peculiar mission. In a postscript to this 

*'Ili<' length of tliis Mysterious manuscript prevents me from furnishing the 
". itli a lac simile. 


letter, which, although written on earth, was nevertheless 
dictated by spirits from a higher sphere, I also read, espe- 
cially addressed to me, the following : — " You may take th]s 
home, the explanation will hereafter come." I accordingly 
preserved the paper, of which I have received the entire 

The manuscript above referred to contains three different 
communications proceeding from three different spiritual 
societies in the second sphere, who seem to be commissioned 
to assist the earth's inhabitants to attain spiritual light and 
mental illumination. The first communication, which I was 
enabled to translate on the morning I received the document, 
as above related, is an admonition to the parents of these 
children ; whose physical and electrical state rendered it easy 
for a peculiar class of spirits to furnish at least inferior evi- 
dences of their presence, thereby making manifest their de- 
sire to cultivate a nearer and more intimate and therefore 
profitable acquaintance with humanity. To accomplish this 
very desirable object, they sought such " mediums" as they 
could make generally available, and, through them, accom- 
plished such manifestations, and produced such phenomena 
as those mediums would admit of. It is, as I have already 
said, a species of magnetic telegraph which the religious and 
theological condition of the world at present requires. For 
the moral, scientific and intellectual tendencies of the most 
advanced minds of this age are, to explore the far-extending 
and all-embracing realms of infinitude ; and such minds can 
not possibly stop short of the accomplishment and establish- 
ment of an actual commerce between the natural and the 
spiritual worlds, as between Europe and America ; and in 
this the higher spheres of sciences, love, power and intelli- 
gence, are making every effort to assist them. If in the &e- 
ginning, some of the means of communication between the 
two worlds are imperfect and unsatisfactory, then let us help 
more and more to perfect and multiply those means, to the 
end that mistakes and misapprehensions may be less fre- 
quent and less confounding to sensuous understandings. 
The second communication, recorded on thin paper, is as 
follows : — 

60 truth and mystery. 

"Who among you will give ear to these things? Who 
will hearken, and hear, and ask, concerning .the time to 

COME ?" 

* The third communication, which follows, was written more 
emphatically than those preceding it, and its interpretation 
reads : — 

"Let all the nations be gathered togeiher, and let 


From the strength and beauty of the foregoing translations 
we are led to infer, what many, very many spiritually minded 
individuals have long believed, that something of importance 
to the social, religious and philosophical world in general, is 
to flow through the magnetic channel which is now opened 
between this planet and the inhabitants of the Spirit- 
Country. But iiere it may be asked, by some of those who 
are following me in this investigation, — " Did you know who 
the spirits were who made the manifestations in that house ?" 
To the inquiry of such readers I reply that, with my spiritual 
perceptions, I was enabled to observe, during my visits at the 
house in question, five spirits who were delegates from the 
spirit-land. Two of these were related to the children — the 
mediums ; but the remaining three approached this family 
thus, not because they were related according to the ties of 
consanguinity on the earth, but because of a peculiar consti- 
tutional or organic affinity, or friendship, which existed be- 
tween them ; the spirits were there, accomplishing their 
mission, by the principle of attraction and congeniality which 
draws like to like. At the time I beheld these spirits I was 
impressed that a train of circumstances would soon reveal to 
the family who some or all of these visitors were. I described, 
however, the personal appearance of one of their spiritual 
friends and visitants — not in accordance with the manifesta- 
tions of the beautiful form he then wore, but the appearance 
of his former earthly form and features, a representation of 
which he permitted me to see in his memory with the express 
design to have me give a description of him, as he appeared 
on earth, which could be recognized by those who knew him 


here. It will be remembered by my readers, that an individ- 
lal experiences almost immediately — almost in the twinkling 
)f an eye — subsequent to his emergement from the earthly 
organism, a general alteration and change in the appearance 
and dimensions of his spiritual organization ; the latter — the 
indestructible body in which the spirit lives — becomes les- 
sened, and improved, both in form and feature, to an extent 
proportionate to its want of symmetry and beauty previous 
to the event of death ! Hence it is that, to ascertain the 
exact appearance of a spiritual individual according to his 
former or rudimental existence, it becomes indispensably ne- 
cessary to read from the tablet of memory, which each spirit 
can and does present unlocked for that purpose, whenever it 
earnestly desires its personal history or genealogy traced to 
some particular period, event, or circumstance, of the past, 
pertaining to its earthly career. And thus was disclosed to 
me the lineaments once worn by the father of the children — 
Henry and his sister ; and, by my brief description thus ob- 
tained, he was recognized by the step-father as the former 
husband of his wife. 

The peculiar trivial and apparently motiveless character of 
the majority of these manifestations — some of which are 
seemingly childish and without any distinct purpose — ap- 
parently so very human — constitute one powerful cause why 
many persons are moved to regard them as being altogether 
of earthly origin. In fact, I discover that a few of them are 
caused by mundane agencies ; because, simply, no gold is so 
pure that it has not its counterfeit and successful imitation. 
But, alas, much of the genuine manifestation is rejected be- 
cause of the imperfect idea man has of spirit. The reader, 
doubtless, well knows that the general impression, with re- 
gard to those who have passed through the process of death, 
is, that they are, as it were, without form — a kind of melan- 
choly ghost — gravely emerging from a sepulchre, the spectral 
apparition of a thin, transparent, cloudy, vaporish combina- 
tion of something, which may be nothing after all ; or else, 
a spirit is by most minds conceived of as being wholly imma- 
terial, which term, when properly analyzed, is only another 
word for nothing. It is, therefore, a very serious fact, that 


the prevalent opinions among mankind, concerning the con- 
dition and appearance of the departed from earth, are so er- 
roneous, chimerical and imaginative, that the general idea of a 
spirit is not, in fact, more real and distinct in form or sub- 
stance than the air which we inhale. Even those who, in the 
brilliant extravagance and partial flights of their ardent ima- 
ginations, describe angels with wings soaring through the 
heavens, are but giving to the airy elaborations of their own 
minds the wings of the eagle — their conception of angels not 
being emancipated from the animal kingdom in external 
nature. Many suppose that our breath is our spirit. Hence, 
it is not surprising that any thing resembling mirth or plea- 
sure, alleged to proceed from and to be manifested by 
spirits, is, at first, repulsed by the generality of religious 
minds as altogether beneath the nature, dignity and position 
of those heavenly visitants from that unseen and mysterious 
world which lies beyond the grave. But this opinion — 
I am deeply impressed to say — is based upon superstition 
and theological error. The truth is — and it imparts a pro- 
foundly grand joy to know it — that every faculty of the 
human mind is expressly designed for good ; and, in the 
spirit-world, as well as upon earth, these faculties are or 
should be supplied with the proper means for their right- 
eous gratification. The merely passing from the natural 
body into the spiritual body does. not deprive us of any of our 
affectional or wisdom endowments. Nay, our faculties are 
immortal and endlessly progressive ; and their capabilities 
are enlarged and refined, beyond this incipient life, to the 
end that we may the more enjoy the glorious realities conse- 
quent upon a continued, but more glorious existence. Even 
the most advanced spirits in the upper spheres are serenely 
joyous and cheerful ; and others, not so progressed, as they 
become good and happy, are not the less mirthful. Nor will 
the spirits — when they can approach us — wear a mask of 
false solemnity; for they are natural as free; and, being 
fri e, because they " know the truth," we are consequently not 
to suppose that they will ever treat our " serious' errors as 
if they were divine truths ; or, that any spirits will come to 
worship at the shrines of our idolatry, or pay particular re- 


spect to the .theological idols which man, in his passage from 
savageism to the present era, has ignorantly erected, deified 
and worshiped. 

These remarks I have been impressed to make with par- 
ticular reference to several manifestations which have oc- 
curred in the reverend gentleman's house at Stratford, during 
the hours of prayer, especially at the very time when the 
family members were assembled to perform that ceremony ; 
and I allude, also, to many very surprising representations 
in perfect imitation of these conventional gatherings. These 
tableaued groupings consisted of figures very perfectly made 
from various articles of wearing apparel belonging to the 
family ; and each of the artificially formed personages was 
inclining or kneeling in graceful and solemn attitudes of 
prayer. It was necessary to approach them closely to 
be assured they were not living. These mysteriously ar- 
ranged exhibitions were discovered in the young lady's sleep- 
ing apartment, which was situated on the second floor of the 
building. And sometimes, when the family members were 
at prayers, books have been violently thrown across the 
room ; and many noises and disturbances have been, at such 
times, developed so distinctly and unexpectedly as to beget 
the impression — only, however, in superstitious and errone- 
ously educated minds — that the invisible beings and poten- 
cies, in their midst, were positively and unqualifiedly "evil," — 
having no reverential regard for good things and religious 
institutions ; and, therefore, the ecclesiastical powers of the 
village decreed that the spirits should be repelled thenceforth 
from human habitations. And the people called them 
" devils," who had been expressly sent, many believed by God, 
as a divine judgment upon the reverend gentleman because 
of the interest he has for several years felt in the phenomena 
of human magnetism. Now, I am impressed with two 
reasons why these imitations and disturbances were made — 
First, in a family where the external ceremony, as well as the 
internal reality of prayer are esteemed as equally sacred, es- 
sential and holy, it would be manifestly unreasonable for the 
public to believe that any members of that household would 
regard this ceremony as a matter of no importance — even 


to the making of it food for mirth, however harmless that 
mirth might have been — as their unseen visitors evidently 
did. And the second reason is this, — the spirits are disposed 
to gently teach the earth's inhabitants that there is but little 
reality in the mere ceremony of praying. For the artificially- 
made figures, grouping in prayerful attitudes, apparently 
worshiping, though mute and motionless, distinctly panto- 
mimed this impressive lesson: — "Behold now, there is no 
more substance, importance, or reality in the mere ceremony 
which we are exhibiting than there is beneath these habiliments 
which compose us." 

I am impressed to affirm that spirits, being educated iri 
truth, and in the perfections of Deity, as they are, have no more 
veneration for our sacred errors than we have for the stone 
and wooden gods of the barbarian. 

For seven years I have been more or less in a condition to 
associate with, and be influenced by, spiritual personages who 
are advanced beyond this life in every respect — in situation, 
cultivation and intelligence ; and I know that I am justified 
by immutable truth in affirming, that spirits are moved to 
respect only such prayers as are conceived and uttered in 
the most inward sanctuary of our nature, — in the interior 
" closet" of the soul, when " the door is shut" against every 
selfish and worldly sentiment, and when Love reigns over 
every desire and impulse, — this is the only sanctuary in which 
prayer is pure and sanctified ! 

But here the questions arise, particularly in the minds of 
those who know of the alleged manifestations at Stratford — 
If fhese spirits design to teach such important lessons to 
man, why do they not invent some other more dignified 
and less imperfect mode of communication ? Why do they 
throw stones, and knives, and forks, and spoons about? 
Why do they rend the children's garments, break win- 
dows, &c, as it is known to a demonstration they have ? 
The answer to these very natural queries, is exceedingly 
simple to my mind — it is this : The position which the rever- 
end gentleman, at whose house the phenomena were occur- 
ing, professionally occupies before the world, and the respect- 
ability of his family in society, go toward making up many 


strong inducements for the whole household to combine to 
suppress and hush the many disclosures, (all new revealed 
truths being unpopular, and therefore rejected by the world ;) 
and thus the whole family would have motives for concealing 
from the public, as far as possible, all knowledge of the mys- 
terious manifestations. But the peculiar and determined 
character of those apparently trivial transactions were such 
as to render any thing like a concealment of them positively 
impossible. It will be remembered that the direction to the 
inmates of this house, was — " Let the nations be gathered to- 
gether ; let the people be assembled ; let them take unto them- 
selves witnesses, that they may be justified ; or let them hear 
these things, and say, It is Truth." 

It is well that the reader should distinctly understand — 
and I will, therefore, parenthetically remark — that though the 
proprietor and occupant of this Stratford residence seemed 
desirous to get all possible instruction and knowledge con- 
cerning the nature and intention of these mysterious develop- 
ments, yet — because the dominant sectarians of the village 
admonished him, with implied threats of a church trial in 
case he did not accede to their wishes not to encourage these 
" satanic operations" any more — he refused to hear many of 
the translations of the mysterious characters read, which was 
the sole object of my last visit to the house in question. In fact, 
D r< p ' s situation was at that time, and even subsequent- 
ly, in many particulars, extremely unpleasant and unsafe ; 
with the mob spirit of ignorant and despotic individuals on 
one side, and the sectarian spirit of scarcely less ignorant and 
consummate bigots on the other ; and the members of his 
family were not exempt from the bitter prejudices and unkind 
remarks which the so-called religious community of Strat- 
ford very readily generated. It was principally for reasons 
and considerations like the above, I think, that the Doctor 
refused to hear read my report of the investigation, which 
contained the admonition — " let the nations be gathered to- 
gether," &c, which I deemed necessary to the welfare of the 
family and the world. 

The house is now, I believe, without a tenant ; and the 
family have removed to the beautiful city of Philadelphia. 



Whether the phenomena of spiritual manifestations still occur 
in the presence of the youth and the young lady, I am not 
now impressed to say ; but I consider them very excellent 
mediums ; and, were I allowed to express my impressions with 
regard to them, I should favor the encouragement and culti- 
vation of their vital-electro-magnetic condition, and thereby 
establish a free and convincing communication between the 
inhabitants of our earth and those of the Spirit-Land. But 
this desirable end can not be, in any case, accomplished, 
while external circumstances, early education, and trifling 
contingencies, are permitted to act upon the human mind in 
the capacity of masters. 

By the directions — " let the people be assembled — let them 
take unto themselves witnesses" — it will be perceived, that 
the family were, as they had also been in other ways and 
at other times, distinctly and repeatedly admonished not to 
'•'hide their light under a bushel." These so-called mys- 
terious things must be seen, and heard, and honestly acknow- 
ledged ; and the "light" which the witnesses thereof receive 
must be allowed to shine upon all those who desire to see the 
truth, without respect of persons, or reference to theology, 
sect, complexions or nations. Again, the question will be 
asked, — " Why do not the spirits write their thoughts in our 
language ?" And the reply is, that, as our language can be 
written by almost every individual in the community, it w 7 ould 
be very easy for some designing and mischievous person to 
commit a fraud ; whilst the peculiar style and novel charac- 
ters which distinguish these written communications from 
that which the boy Henry, or any but a most accomplished 
penman, could execute in their ordinary condition, are suffi- 
cient to impress any reasonable and intelligent person, (who 
should see the characters,) with the serious and irresistible 
conviction, that wisdom and instruction are hidden beneath, 
and designed to be imparted by, those mysteriously drawn 
symbols of thought. And I am also impressed to assert, that, 
when it is clear to a demonstration that written communica- 
tions can emanate from spiritual beings and super-mundane 
agencies, then the spirits will write in our language. More- 


over, when the)' are no longer repelled from human habita- 
tions and minds, by obstructive doubts and superstitious fears, 
they may even approach so near as to orally pronounce many 
suggestive and affectionate words in the willing and prepared 
ear. The word "Selah" was written in English charac- 
ters — perhaps, to manifest their ultimate intention of adopting 
this method of imparting thoughts and instructions to the 
earth's inhabitants. 

It will be asked, — "How do spirits write upon paper?" I 
am constrained to reply, in addition to the note on this point, 
that I attempted to ascertain who wrote two or three some- 
what suspicious communications which I have seen from time 

to time at Dr. P 's house, but I could on\y feel attached to 

the sheets, as I held them in my hand, a general sphere which 
did not conduct me definitely and especially to any individ- 
ual in or out of the terrestrial body. When first I psycho- 
metrically examined the letter which I have, above translated, 
I experienced something like the "sphere" of a person still 
living in the earthly body ; and I, then, concluded that I mere- 
ly felt the influence which the mother's hand had impressed 
upon the paper when she took it from the child who found it 
at the gate. The precise manner in which some of the writ- 
ten communications, as also the representative figures, which 
have been found in and about that house, originated, I am 
not now impressed to state. But I will here remark, that spir- 
its can influence some peculiar organizations so as to induce 
a somnambulic state of mind, and then can cause the individ- 
ual, thus affected, to do what he could not do in his natural 
condition ; and, upon releasing him from that state, they can, 
in the twinkling of an eye, efface from his external memory 
all impressions of the transaction in which he was instrumen- 
tal ; and thus render him totally forgetful of what he has been 
doing. In this manner it is possible — and my impressions 
strongly move me to assert the probability thereof — that the 
spirits have employed some impressible person in that family, 
or in the Stratford community, to write some of those commu- 
nications which were there received, also to arrange the ex- 
pressive tableaux. Whilst I am not permitted, for some good 
reasons, to be more definite respecting them, I am positively 


assured that a comparatively brief time will disclose the all- 
embracing explanation of these apparently inexplicable things 
which have occurred in the midst of this family ; and, in the 
mean time, let it be duly remembered, that this thing is cer- 
tain — there is an amount of learning and extraordinary taste 
displayed in those Stratford manifestations, which, to telieve 
that they all originated with the children, or with any other 
human agencies whatsoever, requires far more credulity and 
hypothesis than are requisite to an admission and honest ac- 
knowledgment of their supernatural, or, more properly speak- 
ing, their supersensuous origin and character. In a manner 
peculiar to myself, I have ascertained, and, therefore, I know, 
that these wonderful developments were spiritually unfolded. 
The reader will remember, the already stated interesting 
fact in natural philosophy, that the physical system of the 
youth, Henry, at times generates a soft and high quality of 
vital electricity, which renders him alternately positive and 
negative, and, therefore, a good medium through which spir- 
itual intelligences could manifest their willingness and desire 
to approach, and communicate with, mankind. His sister's 
physical state is somewhat different. She seems to be more 
of a recipient, than a conductor, of the predominating ele- 
ments. It is also a curious fact — one especially worthy of 
notice and a philosophical application — that the youth's sys- 
tem was often suddenly relieved of its superabundant electri- 
city by the unexpected introduction of a stranger into the 
room, — the close proximity of certain individuals would inva- 
riably conduct this element from him ; and, generally speak- 
ing, the phenomena of throwing and moving various portable 
articles seldom, if ever, occurred either while his mind was 
anxious for exhibitions, or when he was very warm and undu- 
ly excited. Here we are jeminded, that, on all occasions, the 
mediums must remain perfectly passive, as to the time and 
nature of the manifestations, lest, by acquiring a too positive 
condition, they should render the demonstrations, for the time 
being, impossible ; and the same advice is likewise applicable 
to those who assemble to witness these things, or who may 
be living in the various localities where f ley are, or are likely 
to be, developed. 


There already has been, and there will be again and again, 
thousands of human things devised and enacted in the world 
in the midst of these spiritual developments ; but not now can 
they be all unraveled and philosophically explained. Each 
ndividual mind must first grow into a discriminating knowl- 
edge of these things, and be able to distinguish for himself: 
and, when the minds of thinking men become duly initiated 
into the laws and truths pertaining to spiritual life and end- 
less existence, then — and only then — will an easy and simple 
explanation of all things be found and comprehended. The 
people must be educated by their own experience. By these 
manifestations we are solemnly admonished to be cautious, 
wise, just, and dispassionate in our investigations, and partic- 
ularly in our decisions, with regard to those exhibitions which 
we may hear of or behold ; because the alphabetical and 
other sounds, — as well as the written communications which 
friendly guardian spirits can and often will make to us through 
the agency of some electrical individuals, — are, as I interiorly 
know, susceptible of an easy and almost an indistinguishable 
imitation, — the real suggesting the counterfeit. If this healthy 
and righteous precaution be at first in all cases observed, I 
am impressed to say that many good and truth-loving minds 
will be thereby saved from much mortification and disap- 
pointment. Let all men search out the truth, — being " wise 
as serpents and harmless as doves ;" let them not be content 
with a mere faith in the seeming, but let them seek a knowl- 
edge of what is ; and, above all, let not the discovery of the 
counterfeit cause them to reject the true. Nay ; for where 
there is a Christ, there will be false Christs ; where there is 
gold, there is also its semblance. But let not the investi- 
gator — he, who tries the spirits by Nature and Reason's prin- 
ciples — be discouraged ; let him not turn back, for " he who 
seeks shall find ;" and the time has nearly arrived — is even 
now at the door — when the earth's inhabitants may hold com- 
munion with those whose " places here behold them no more ;" 
but who, from their exalted positions, may speak to us in our 
homes, — at the firesides where we have so missed them, — in 
the " circles" where once they gathered with us, and to which 
they now return. Let us not refuse to hearken to their voices 


when they call to us through such existing "mediums" here, 
as they can approach ; neither let us refuse the incipient 
means designed to impress the human understanding with a 
clear realization of their existence and nearness ; for spirits 
have visited, and will continue to visit, the dwellers of earth ; 
and, ere long, many other mediums will be developed through 
whom the inhabitants of superior spheres may communicate 
their principles of truth and peace, and the most advanced 
numan minds shall hear and understand ! And to the end 
that all may become recipients of heavenly messages, let all 
begin to form true characters, to adopt correct habits, to live 
just and noble lives. And let it be deeply impressed upon 
every understanding, that that individual who resists those 
spiritual influences which flow from the Great Love Princi- 
ple, God, and who prefers the gratification of selfish and 
worldly desires to spiritual communion, at last feels those 
gracious visitings no more upon the earth; and, in those 
lonely hours which bring reflection, he will contemplate a 
•'dark valley" before him — dark, because he refuses to see 
that inflowing and inextinguishable light which dissipates the 
"shadows of death," and the mysterious gloom of oriental 
error and theological superstitions. 


It is true, that nearly all the communications and develop- 
ments which have been thus far received through electrical 
vibrations, do not at first appear, to the advanced ^and gene- 
ralizing mind, as possessing sufficient importance to demand 
much attention. The responses have mainly been very sim- 
ple, and contracted to exceedingly laconic expressions of 
thought, which have frequently proved unreliable, and occa- 
sionally almost destitute of signification. These communi- 
cations are sometimes so trivial, and the replies, in some in- 
stances, so inferior in point of intelligence to the ordinary 
information among intelligent and practical men, that many 


believing and earnestly seeking individuals almost despair of 
ever obtaining any valuable truths through the sounds ; at 
the same time — in consequence of those trivial responses — 
skeptics denounce them as arising wholly from human sources 
and premeditated deception. The general impression is, that 
the Spirit- World would develop more dignified and soul- 
thrilling truths, — that spirits would breathe forth only great 
and lofty thoughts, — that their replies to our questions would 
be more consistent with what we conceive to be the scope 
of the capabilities of those advanced beyond this evanescent 
existence, and who come to us as messengers (or angels) from 
a higher world ; and thus — notwithstanding the constant ac- 
cumulation of evidences that spirits do in reality communicate 
through sounds, — the skeptical mind, which may possess ex- 
alted sensibilities, is forced to encounter many very uninter- 
esting and apparently meaningless developments in this new 
region of investigation. Now, I confess to you, reader, that 
these things are truly great objections to the progressed intel- 
lect. But, I repeat, the religious want of this era, is a sensu- 
ous demonstration of the truths of immortality ; and, upon 
serious and deliberate reflection, I think, the candid inquirer 
can not but acknowledge that no method could possibly be 
more adequate or better adapted to the accomplishment of 
these ends, to the satisfaction of the general mind, than the 
asking of various test questions, which are daily put to the 
spirits, and cheerfully answered by them through the electri- 
cal vibrations. Do you not think so, reader ? A sound, re- 
sponsive to your utterance of a loved name, gives sweet assur- 
ance that the spirit which is called upon, both hears and an- 
swers. And just for one moment suppose that that answer- 
ing intelligence spells out to you, alphabetically, by what are 
commonly termed "raps," given at every required letter, the 
name of its former place of residence on earth — tells from 
what locality it departed this life — and mentions the disease 
or accident which caused its departure hence ; counts you 
its age when it left the grosser form ; and says how many 
years, or months, or days, it has dwelt in a higher sphere, — 
I say, for the sake of the conclusion, just admit this supposi- 
tion, and then ask yourself, are not these, and like answers, 


exceedingly convincing to those who search fcr a living evi- 
dence of the spirit's individualization and immo/tality ? More- 
over, should the answers be such as the inquirer supposes, at 
the time, to be incorrect, but which he afterward, by special 
reference to recorded facts, finds to be exactly true — as has 
frequently occurred, — would not such a test be very satisfac- 
tory ? Is it not convincing, even to the sensuous observer 
and materialist, that the spirit answering is still in existence ; 
that the friend, with whom intercourse is sought, is not dead, 
and decaying in the grave ; that immortality is indeed a truth ? 
And now, reader, what more is required ? Is it that your 
soul would learn of the bright realities of the Spirit-Home ? 
Do you seek acquaintance with the conditions and experi- 
ences consequent upon spiritual existence ? Does your mind 
yearn after the nobler truths pertaining to the superior life 
and world ? If so, then seek deeper sources, — because you 
are prepared to graduate, from the primary school of electric 
sounds, into higher colleges of spiritual instruction ! 

Intercourse with the spirit-world through the electrical 
sounds is the most incipient and rudimental method which 
can possibly be adopted. Minds of the materialistic order — 
those individuals who will noj believe in, or attempt the in- 
vestigation of, any thing which lies beyond the limited sphere 
and scope of the outer senses — are the proper pupils to attend 
the primary school of spiritual intercourse ; which school is 
manifestly designed to educate the external man with regard 
to these germinal truths of spiritualism, which will conduct the 
mind progressively onward to the apprehension of more ele- 
vating realities — to the mighty truths and universal sweep 
of the Harmonial Philosophy ! And as in a primary school, 
where are taught the first lessons of earthly education, there 
is noise — confusion — triviality ; so likewise — in accordance 
with analogical reasoning — in the infant schools of spiritual 
knowledge, where instruction is mainly imparted through the 
electric sounds and correlative demonstrations, we also hear 
of disorder — tumult — and discordant results. The manner 
— let it be remembered — of learning our earthly A. B. C. 
does not differ very much from the neio method of learning 
spiritual things ; only the latter school is attended by " chil- 


dren of a larger growth," whose minds are more advanced in 
age and worldly intelligence. 

At first glance it seems, that to anticipate high results to 
flow from spiritual communications through sounds, is to ex- 
pect ends which the means do not appear adequate to accom- 
plish ; but, upon calm and philosophical reflection, it is man- 
ifestly as reasonable to hope for valuable issues from these 
small beginnings as to expect oaks from acorns, or to antici- 
pate the future lofty man when we gaze upon the new r -born 
babe. " But," says the objector, " the communications are 
mainly without scope and importance, and are frequently 
contradictory and false," — and he asks — " what is the mean- 
ing of this ? is it to demonstrate to our senses the existence 
of ignorant, wicked, or evil, spirits ? — to demonstrate and 
thoroughly prove to us that the Spirit- World is no better 
than the Earth ?" Now here, seemingly, is a great problem 
— a matter, requiring much research, much wisdom, much 
explanation ; and yet I can assure the reader, that, to my 
mind, the real causes of contradictory and false communica- 
tions are neither beyond the earth's inhabitants, or difficult 
to explain. And as this is the subject now presented to my 
mind, I will proceed to its exposition. 

In the first place, it is necessary to understand that spiritual 
intercourse, through electrical vibrations, is a discovery as new 
to many of the inhabitants of the Second Sphere as it is to the 
dwellers on the Earth. The inhabitants of Mars, Jupiter, 
and Saturn, (of the latter especially,) enjoy similar and far 
superior communion with those passed from their planets into 
the higher spheres. And the fair spirits of those bright 
worlds — advanced to a brighter land — confine their inter- 
course, chiefly, to the dwellers upon the Orbs from which they 
have been translated. And so those individuals who have left 
our earth, still retain for its inhabitants a more particular 
affinity and attraction than they feel toward the dwellers on 
any other world or earth. Hence, those spirits, who now 
have their homes in the spheres above, return to their respec- 
tive birth-place planets more frequently and intimately than 
they visit any other of the inhabited .globes of the universe. 
Though the^ mav travel from star to star in quest of truth 


and knowledge, — though sometimes a spirit, whose genealogy 
may be traced to earth, is attracted to communicate with 
one or more of the beautifully progressed inhabitants of the 
more advanced planets, or vice versa, an angel, passed from 
a more glorious world into that world's high heaven, may be 
drawn to seek communion with some mind on our earth — 
yet the rule seems to be, that spirits particularly visit that 
world which was the cradle of their existence ; thus to com- 
mune with those who are dwelling where they once dwelt, 
and who have not yet passed through that process, called 
death — a translation — which shall admit them, (the earth- 
dwellers,) also into higher spheres of eternal life. And, 
therefore, it is, that, while spiritual communications are be- 
ing, (as they have been for many centuries,) enjoyed through 
the electrical vibrations and in various other ways — includ- 
ing mental illumination, which is termed clairvoyance — 
upon the planets Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, the spirits that 
have passed from our earth have not, until very recently, 
known that such electrical methods could be adopted in the 
order of nature. 

The beatified soul intuitively knows that influx of truths 
and principles into the vessels of the mind is possible — pro- 
per — delightful — reformatory — and exalting ; and the past 
religious history of mankind, as well as modern manifestations 
of spiritual insight and influence, distinctly indicate the 
countless efforts made by spirits to convince man of immor- 
tality and correlative truths. But that they could put them- 
selves into electrical rapport with terrestrial magnetism and 
thereby establish a positive and negative relationship, (by 
an action of their will-power,) between themselves and indi- 
viduals and inorganic substances in this world, is a truth 
which, by our own earth-born spirits, has but recently, to any 
extent, been discovered and its practical application studied. 
And here let me remark, that many, very many erroneous 
and contradictory communications can be traced to this 
cause, viz. : — the unadvanced education of many of the spirits 
themselves in regard to these rudimental things. Such 
spirits very frequently attempt to communicate their thoughts 
through the sounds, — a desire, which they necessarily so im- 


perfectly accomplish as to be mistaken and misunderstood 
on the earth. 

It is very erroneous for any persons to imagine, as so many 
do, that spirits attain to an almost boundless knowledge as 
soon as they enter upon their new life. In the higher spheres, 
spirits must progress in Love and Wisdom, just as, in this 
world, man advances in scientific and philosophical attain- 
ments. True, there is an expansion of the intellect, in pro- 
portion to its growth here, when it is transplanted to develop 
more and more in a clearer and brighter atmosphere ; and 
so, many thoughts, which have agitated human minds more 
or less even since man first moved upon the earth, are readily 
perceived and comprehended by spirits ; and thus great prin- 
ciples are rapturously pursued into their endless ramifications, 
by the inhabitants of the higher spheres. But still there are 
countless truths w 7 hich the spirits, in general, do not quickly 
discover nor understand ; and, as they would "press forward 
to the things which are before," it is not so agreeable for 
them to turn to " the things that are left behind" — to contem- 
plate some of those truths which are rudimental and pertain 
to mere material things and changeful sciences. 

When the human soul passes from earth into the second 
sphere, it is inclined, at first, to indulge in the gratification 
of its strongest love or impulse ; but unless it be a pure love, 
a good (or rather a riglt ^-directed) impulse, then the means 
of its gratification — I rejoice to say — are not to be found 
within the territories of the Spirit-Land — are not to be found 
within the range of all those things by which the initiated 
spirit is moved to learn the immutable principles of Love 
and Wisdom, and to live a life of eternal obedience to the 
laws of God, which are unchangeable — universal — harmoni- 
ous — infinite ! But when the human soul enters the spirit- 
world with good passions (or affections) and impulses, then 
— and only then — is their gratification easy and unrestricted ; 
and progress may be made in one single direction for cen- 
turies. Some spirits become highly educated in that partic- 
ular truth or science for which they feel the most absorbing 
sympathy and interest, while respecting other truths and 
sciences they ma\ h< comparatively destitute of information. 


For instance, — in the great truths pertaining to comparative 
anatomy and physiology as unfolded in the animated king- 
dom of Nature — the same great principles and truths reach- 
ing far and wide in every direction, embracing the form and 
functions of the universe — in all these you will find Galen, 
and a host of similarly constituted minds, richly educated 
and accomplished. But you will not find Moses, or Isaiah, 
or St. John, possessing the same high knowledge of these 
scientific truths. This class of minds, having a strong love 
for moral truths even while on the earth, continue still pro- 
gressing and attaining in moral and spiritual directions. 
These great and highly accomplished minds have advanced 
as far in searching out moral truth as Galen has progressed 
in his investigations of scientific truth. Their goal is on- 
ward ; and, therefore, it is not reasonable to conclude that 
they, the great moral students — the alumni of the spheres — 
avail themselves of the electrical vibrations whereby to com- 
municate their thoughts to congenial minds on the earth ; 
neither would they be likely to understand and skillfully man- 
age the newly-discovered means and instrumentalities of 
communication as well as those spirits whose chief attraction 
and education consist in scientific researches. Neither sup- 
pose they themselves should communicate with man in this 
rudimental manner, would it be wisdom to ask Isaiah a sci- 
entific question, or to interrogate Galen with regard to 
merely moral subjects, because — though their responses 
might be truthful — their style of answering would be consist- 
ent with the proclivity and pursuit of their minds, and the 
inquirer might possibly receive a wrong impression. And 
should there be a misunderstanding of the answers, then an 
explanation is not easy. Spirits can not always make the 
human mind comprehend a subject in all its bearings ; par- 
ticularly when communicating through the imperfect, uncer- 
tain, and tedious method of spiritual intercourse by electrical 
sounds and manifestations. And inasmuch as spirits are 
neither infallible or omnipotent, and are compelled to conform, 
(when they endeavor to impart their thoughts through these 
electrical agencies,) to the principles and conditions of this 
new method, which they can not altogether control, it is not 


safe at all times to depend on any given number of "raps" 
as indicating a positive " yes" or " no," or any other particu- 
lar word o^ sentence. Because a spirit — perhaps, communi- 
cating for the first time, and being one who can not readily 
learn the science of thus communing, but ivho greatly desires to 
answer a friend here — may not always be able to manage the 
sounds so as to prevent misunderstandings and apparent con- 
tradictions. Therefore, on the part of the inquirer, great 
vigilance and care are necessary to the end that the mind may 
not be misled. And let not any man's sensuous and unedu- 
cated judgment, with a ready and thoughtless condemnation, 
accuse those messengers from our future home of " false- 
hood" and intentional deception ; because mistakes may 
arise, where explanation is now so difficult, in consequence 
of the infancy and newness of this telegraphic method of 
correspondence among the departed from the earth, now in 
the higher world, and in consequence, also, of man's present 
inability to wholly comprehend the laws, principles and con- 
ditions of its action here. 


By direct influx or impression from the highly accom- 
plished spirit of Benjamin Franklin, I learn that we owe prin- 
cipally to him the discovery of this electrical method of tele- 
graphing from the second sphere to the earth's inhabitants. 
The substance of my communication with him, on the 6th 
day of January, 1851, was as follows. I give his own words 
faithfully rendered. 

" In searching out," says that great mind, " the numerous 
manifestations of spiritual presence among the multitudinous 
sects and nations of the earth, I perceived that the great gen- 
eral principle of aromal intercourse had been observed, but 
never particularly understood, by spirits (the so-called inhab- 
itants of this sphere) when they have from time to time com- 
municated. In compliance with the great, inextinguishable 
love I feel for scientific research and exploration, I have 


steadily — with calm and fervent joy — progressed from point 
to point in this attainment by following the principles of pan- 
thea, or of electricity, into their innumerable windings and 
diversified modifications. I have contemplated this element's 
mighty workings in Nature's great nervous system ; its pas- 
sing from constellation to constellation, from planet to planet ; 
its wide and mighty sweepings from the inhabitants of the 
superior circles of the Second Sphere to the people upon the 
remotest worlds ; and in all its far searchings and multifarious 
operations I have seen God. These wonderful and soul- 
absorbing observations have also been made by individuals 
far more distinguished for intellectual accomplishments and 
discoveries than myself; though these minds had not yet 
studied the application of the panthea principles as the means 
of establishing a communication with the inhabitants of earth. 
But the time having now arrived when numerous minds upon 
that planet, the earth, were prepared by the advancements 
which the various sciences have made there — the magnetic 
telegraph appearing as a herald before — I suggested to. my 
companions the propriety of demonstrating, upon that birth- 
place of the human mind, the doctrine of immortality, to the 
end that man's ever searching soul might there no more, in 
its early stages of existence, have, its bright light clouded by 
the " shadows of death," — a gloom of ignorance which we, for 
want of palpable evidences, had ourselves experienced on the 
earth. And I proposed the opening of a material instrumen- 
tality which would be of universal use to those who might 
desire to hold communion with their friends on the earth ; as 
all minds might be approached in this way, whilst only the 
few were approachable and reached by interior or mental 
communion. I found the German spirits most sympathetic 
to this proposition, and I informed the whole circle of 
congenial associates of my discovery, that numerous mani- 
festations of spiritual power had been made to the earth's 
inhabitants, in ages past, by the panthea principle of aromal 
intercourse; but that the scientific method had not been 
perceived, nor practiced ; therefore, that no permanent or 
essential results had as yet been obtained. I then listened to 
the serene observations of Fenelon and William Ellery 


Ohanning, who declared that, from their co-equal researches 
into the moral and spiritual necessities of mankind, it was 
their knowledge that, in case such aromal communication 
could be established, the people on some portions of the earth 
would listen, and be thereby advanced toward enlightenment, 
wisdom, unity and truth ! Thus I was assured and positively 
encouraged that the time had arrived when our terrestrial 
friends had reached that point or apex of intelligence which 
would cause them to investigate whence could proceed the 
"sounds" — to search whence came the " manifestations" — 
and seek to understand and gradually practice the science of 
this mode of " communication ;" and I was assured, also, that 
the time was now past when these new things would have 
been ignorantly termed demonism, enchantment, or witch- 
craft ; and that, in the place of the cross for the new, the 
scaffold for the strange and wonderful, there now stood 
erected, upon the earth, a broad ana high platform, from 
whence the voice of truth went forth over all the land ! 
When I heard this, I likewise recognized that the people 
would not reject what they could not all at once understand, 
but that they would gather together to listen, and to observe 
the effects pointing toward superior and invisible sources of 
existence and power. On perceiving all this, I unrolled the 
principles of my discovery, and immediately proposed to 
select the proper localities and persons on the earth through 
which to begin the intercourse. First, I accompanied my 
numerous German associates to a position from which we, 
(united in purpose as one strong mind,) commissioned and 
directed, by an exercise of our volition, an aromal current to 
produce vibrations in the house of a gentleman of distinction 
and learning in Germany. We slightly moved the bed upon 
which he was then reposing ! We operated upon his pillow, 
causing " sounds" resembling the dropping of water ! We 
caused vibrations or pulsative shocks upon his shoulder, and 
thus fairly awoke him ; whereupon his agitation dissipated 
the aromal element which at that particular time his spirit 
exhaled, and which we had taken advantage of for our exper- 
iment. This put an end to our then communications. Sev- 
eral times subsequently we visited the same place and 


person, but never again found external or terrestrial condi- 
tions favorable ; and our further attempts * that house and 
in that portion of the earth were without success. 

"We now sought .other localities. The great vitalizing 
and energizing essences of all organisms in Nature's ascend- 
ing kingdoms, are readily recognized by those who perpetu- 
ally move in harmony with the expansions of the Divine 
principle. Nature's varied beauty and loveliness — the 
breathings of the all-controlling and all-potentializing ele- 
ments of the Great Divinity — are open to the inspiration and 
inspection of the progressed intellect and enlarged mind. 
And thus, by realizing our multitudinous relations to, and 
sympathies with, the electrical conditions necessary to estab- 
lish the aromal intercourse, we were attracted to various 
places, — mostly in America. We succeeded in producing 
some slight " sounds" in Buffalo ; but we could not, at that 
particular time, effect there the desired results. We then 
temporarily placed ourselves in sympathetic connection with 
the most spiritually-minded in Cincinnati ; but we were not 
able to communicate otherwise than by influx to them, and 
thus could influence only the few. We did not then find, in 
that city, the necessary and essential external and material 

" We now passed over Western New York. And particu- 
larly at Auburn and Rochester — perceiving there the required 
pre-requisites — we opened the first communications which 
have, to any extent, engaged the world's attention and inter- 
ested the skeptical intellect. 

u We rejoiced in the success of our experiments, especially 
when we found that the sounds we occasioned were drawing 
numbers to inquire into their origin, and to seek out from 
whence they came ; but we could not prevent frequent mis- 
understandings. The people, in consequence of their excite- 
ment and ignorance of the spiritual causes of the intercourse, 
would unconsciously to themselves glide into many erroneous 
decisions and conclusions ; which remain in the world even 
now uncorrected. Neither oould we prevent the almost 
exact human imitations of our vibrations ; whereby occasional 
sentences were incorrectly spoiled out, — contradicting our 


directions to the "mediums," and in opposition to several 
conditions which we specified as being essential to a proper 
intercourse through sounds. In the midst of our directions 
and communications "confusion" has been "rapped" out, 
and our characters for good, and evil were, (so to speak,) in 
a measure often at the mercy of our mediums and terrestrial 
audiences. I have not myself produced many vibrations. 

Since this method .of sensuous communication has become 
satisfactorily established, whereby spirits can address the 
material senses of their earthly friends, great numbers in this 
sphere are constantly, and with enthusiastic joy, imparting 
thoughts and affectionate sentiments to mankind. Yea, the 
joys and gratifications which flow from this new application of 
the panthe a principle * into the different societies of our divine 
world, and coincidentally and simultaneously into the hearts 
and understandings of many pure and constant minds on the 
earth, can not be uttered, — only experienced! When the 
earth's inhabitants concentrate their intelligence and me- 
chanical skill, and construct vessels and place them under 
the guidance of enterprising and energetic minds, which 
gladly attempt the exploration of new countries and conti- 
nents — discovering thereby more convenient paths or means 
of commerce and national intercommunication, — when men 
accomplish all this, and much more, and a whole nation is 
moved to gratitude and internal congratulations in conse- 
quence thereof, then is manifested, incipiently, on earth some- 
thing of that joyous sensation which thrilled the souls of 
innumerable minds in this Divine Land, occasioned by the 
announcement of the development of this new method of im- 
parting beatifying thoughts and affectionate sentiments to 
the dwellers of the earth ! If mankind would obtain truth 
and righteousness through this new method, I admonish all to 
study the great sustaining principles which organize and con- 
trol both matter and mind, — to recognize and obey the un- 
changeable laws that govern the whole system of materia! 
and celestial existence. By these principles, — by their un- 

* By influx, I learn from Dr. Franklin that the ' ; panthea principle" signified 
" divine element ;" for spirits, he affirms, consider all elements as modifications 
of one great central PRINCIPLE of Love, Will and Wi*' 3 »m. 



varying teachings and lofty tendencies — the comprehensive 
and healthy mind may decide upon the truth or falsity of all 
assertions which refer to things beyond the possibility of 
sensuous demonstration. Let a 1 ! external manifestations be 
referred to interior principles, which should be by all men 
considered as the methods of the Divine Existence. Progress 
in goodness, wisdom and truth ; and Fear not ! 

" Through thee, I now desire to remind the world of a 
remark that I once made to a very dear friend, while we were 
both residing on the earth. A skepticism of the intellect 
concerning the doctrine of the Immortality of the human 
mind — in a real and palpable state of existence and identifi- 
cation — long occupied my thoughts. I once knew what it is 
to be a disbeliever in the soul's future life. This doubt I 
seldom expressed to any one, not even to my most private 
friends. Because I felt the necessity of a living faith among 
men ; I desired it more for others than for myself; my under- 
standing seemed enough for my happiness ; and to apply it 
well, and without cessation, was the effort of my terrestrial 
existence. But one day — I remember it well — when my mind 
was filled with prophetic contemplations and anticipations 
concerning the scientific advancements, commercial improve- 
ments, governmental progressions, and the march of educa- 
tion, freedom and intelligence in the Country I most loved, 
America — I felt a strong desire to behold my country's pros- 
perity about a century from the time I conceived the thoughts 
of which I am now speaking. I therefore expressed a wish that 
some means could be discovered by which my physical body 
might be- kept in a state of preservation — and I, a thinking 
being, be placed in a species of sleep — for the period of fifty 
years, when I desired to be awakened to a full realization of 
the advancements of Time and of its wondrous unfoldings. 
Let me now say, to those who -emember this remark, that I 
have more than realized my evuy conception of future joy ; 
and this signifies much ; for even while on earth, my concep- 
tion of joy never included the externals and superficialities of 

The above is a truthful record of Dr. Franklin's statement 
concerning the origin and early p -ogress of electrical com- 


munications, as accomplished by the inhabitants of the Spirit- 
Land. And, I think, from his explanation of the unavoidable 
derangements in the vibrations, that my readers already 
begin to understand why mistakes and contradictions are 
evolved from this new method of intercourse between the 
natural and the spiritual worlds. It will be perceived that 
one reason is, that the scientific principles and conditions, 
upon which the vibrations are accomplished, are not as yet 
familiar to, and are consequently more or less violated by, 
the many, very many spirits, who avail themselves of the 
advantages of this new discovery with the desire to impart 
their affectionate thoughts and sweet assurances to their 
earthly friends. And another reason is, the occasional mis- 
apprehension of those communications by the recipients here 
of these messages ; and, then, there is necessarily much diffi- 
culty of explanation, owing to the tediousness and imperfection 
of this method of conversing with the departed. But many 
minds will question thus — "Why do not good spirits use pre- 
cautions to successfully prevent these mistakes from arising?" 
Let us now proceed candidly and philosophically to consider 
this point. 

In the first place, it should be well understood, and con- 
stantly remembered, that spiritual beings — the inhabitants of 
the spheres — are, like ourselves, subject, m a subordinate 
degree, to surrounding influences and circumstances ; that 
they progress in science, in philosophy, in theology, in morals, 
in spirituality, and in goodness and purity, just as we advance 
from childhood to maturity ; and that, therefore, spirits can 
not be (in principle) any more infallible than we are, except in 
a comparative sense or degree ; nor are they superior to some 
kinds of imperfection ; for only God is perfect, immaculate, 
and celestial ! And as it would be folly, here among men, to 
ask a little child some grave mathematical or astronomical 
question, which the grown man could hardly solve, and expect 
from that childish intellect a correct answer ; so is it unreason- 
able to ask the, as yet, uneducated spirit of those profound 
trutns with which the higher and laore progressed inhabitants 
of the spirit-land are alone familiar It is true, that what each 
spirit has learned since it has becoi le a resident in the second 


sphere, is correct and reliable as far as that knoioledge extends, 
but the mere translation of a soul from this life does not render 
it either omniscient or omnipotent ; and spirits are, therefore, 
as incapable, under some circumstances, of controlling influ- 
ences and preventing misunderstandings as we are. Conse- 
quently, for their impartations of thought, the spirits require 
good surrounding influences through which they can approach 
us ; and this is as necessary for their communications, as it is 
essential for our right comprehension and appreciation of them, 
that we possess minds unbiased by prejudice, free from sectarian 
bigotry, and open to the reception of truth ! It must not be 
expected that spirits can communicate their thoughts, and, at 
the same time, control our apprehension of them ; nay, though 
they ardently desire to be rightly understood, they can not 
change the operation of this general principle, namely, that 
truth, like water, will inevitably and invariably take the 
form of the vessel into which it flows. Hence, it is not in 
their power to prevent the vast dissimilarity of impressions 
which one truth may produce upon many different minds. 

And there is another essential reason why palpable contra- 
dictions are so often made through the vibrations or sounds. 
Such inconsistences are attributable to the large class of 
sympathetic spirits, — I mean, those spirits who, though passed 
from earth, are not yet emancipated from strong ties and 
terrestrial attractions, and who, consequently, when they 
approach a " circle" of friends assembled to commune with 
them, become so involved in the concentrated " sphere" of the 
minds of the individuals composing that " circle," as to assent 
to almost every thing which the questioners desire them to 
affirm. In evidence of the correctness of this statement, I 
could adduce hundreds of instances where the spirits, com- 
municating through the sounds, have said at one time what 
they subsequently most positively contradicted. Theological 
interrogatories have been put to them ; and at one session of 
a meeting of inquirers, and under one class of circumstances, 
answers were elicited to suit the pre-impressions or predilec- 
tions of the majority of minds constituting the Circle ; but at 
another session, and under a neiv class of influences, the 
former answers were modified or contradicted to an extent 


generally proportionate to the preponderating convictions 
and doctrinal education of the questioning and listening minds. 
On several*- occasions, '(which I will not now particularly de- 
signate,) I perceive occurrences something like the following : 

A circle is organized for the purpose of eliciting a certain 
kind of theological communication ; a member — in behalf of 
the association — inquires : — " Will any of the Apostles com- 
municate with us ?" 

Rap, Rap, Rap ! Or, three sounds, meaning, as they com- 
prehend it, an affirmative. 

"Is St. Paul present?" 

Raps, supposed to signify, " yes." Then follows a succes- 
sion of sounds, punctuated by different distances of time be- 
tween some of them, regarded as "his signal." 

Now, the secretary of the meeting produces his well- writ- 
ten and well-arranged sentences, in the form of interrogato- 
ries, and, reading one of them at a time, he asks : — 

" Is this true ?" 

Three Raps, (or yes,) are his answer. Again, coming to 
a question, which all the circle expect will be negatived by the 
spirits, as being unqualifiedly untrue, the secretary inquires, 
with a doubtful emphasis : 

" Is this also true ?" 

A single " Rap," meaning " no," is the immediate response , 
and the record thereof is accordingly made. 

The above has been presented to me as a general represen 
tation of the manner in which a great variety of theological 
and doctrinal questions have been put to spirits, and responded 
to by them, in accordance with the preponderating "creed" 
of the circle which is organized to receive the communications. 
And I am here impressed to answer a question which must 
involuntarily arise in the reader's mind : — " How is it that a 
spirit like St. Paul — so positive and so advanced as he neces- 
sarily must be — should respond to questions thus sympatheti- 
cally ?" This point I have been led to carefully investigate ; 
and at no one of the circles referred to do I discover, upon the 
most critical interior retrospection, a single communication 
from the veritable apostle Paul, nor from any one of his glori- 
ous compeers. But I find a friend or a relative of some per- 


son or persons in the circle, in sympathetic communication 
witth the members at the meeting, and answering the ques- 
tioner. In human magnetism or psychology, this sympathy of 
one mind with another is clearly exhibited. And the same law 
which acts in that case, is universal and binding, as with a 
golden chain, the material and spiritual universe into one har- 
monious whole. For further illustration of this point, I refer 
the reader to " Great Harmonia," Vol L, p. 199, where this phi- 
losophy is more particularly explained. But let it here be un- 
derstood, that, as an individual in the outer world can be mag- 
netically and sympathetically acted upon by surrounding influ- 
ences and individual minds, so are a certain class of loving, but 
undeveloped and unadvanced spirits, in the inner world, capa- 
ble of being acted upon magnetically and sympathetically by 
the positive idiosyncracies of anxious persons who enter the cir- 
cles for spiritual intercourse through the sounds. If the prin- 
ciples and conditions of these electrical communications were 
not so very material, as they have been shown to me, then 
sympathetic or affectionate spirits would not get so readily 
and thoroughly involved and psychologized by the positive 
magnetic mental sphere of the circle and the interrogator 
Those spirits who dwell more in divine Love than in divine 
Wisdom — if young in spiritual growth — are easily influenced 
to feel precisely what the majority of minds in a circle feel 
and think. Now St. Paul, having nearly attained to "the 
fullness of the stature of the perfect" spirit in the second 
sphere, and dwelling there in divine Wisdom, — should he, 
that glorified spirit, really attempt to impart his thoughts him- 
self through electrical vibrations, there is no doubt but he 
would be more positive than any circle of friends that could 
be formed to receive his impartations of exalted truth. But 
the Apostles do not, themselves personally, come into electri- 
cal relations with any earthly circle ; they do not seek to con- 
verse with mankind in a so material and imperfect manner; 
but, clothed with ambassadorial authority, they visit subordi- 
nate societies in the second sphere, and they instruct the spir- 
its there — in those societies — how they, (the latter spirits,) 
through the new electrical method, may demonstrate to their 
friends on earth the real reality of a spiritual existence, and 


of the happinesses and sublimities consequent upon a passage 
from the first to a second sphere of life ! And this is the one- 
great object of the so-called spiritual " rappings," and other 
demonstrations of the same class. For when it becomes uni- 
versally believed that the Spirit-World is near in its influence 
to our earth, and that spirits from that land are with us and 
about us, — that their watchful love overshadows us, that their 
affections enter in at the open doors of our hearts, so that our 
homes are no longer closed against them, — then will the 
higher results of that blessed belief be manifested in greater 
and sublimer developments of Truth, wisdom, and spirituality 
among men. Self-love, which now so governs in the world, 
will then expand into universal affection ; and the present 
developments of mere externality and materialism will change 
to progression in spiritual wisdom ; and the sun of righteous- 
ness shall have arisen in its glory on the earth, — the coronal 
manifestation of this philosophical connection and delightful 
correspondence between the spheres ! 

In the present state of the world's belief, many intellects 
will think that they must be " evil spirits," who come announc- 
ing and representing themselves to be other than they are, 
and assenting to doctrines and thoughts of which they have 
no certain knowledge, thereby leading the people astray, and 
contradicting themselves. But I am impressed to assure my 
readers that this whole problem can be truthfully solved with- 
out admitting into the premises either " evil " or necessarily 
"ignorant" spirits; only those, among our departed friends, 
who are kind, affectionate, *a'nd very impressible, — as the most 
tenderly loving dispositions almost invariably are, — and this is 
the class of spirits which are mostly drawn to seek intercourse 
with the circles of friends and relatives here who assemble for 
communications. Nor must we admit into our reasonings or 
faiths any thing like the existence of " evil spirits," or spirits 
who wish to lead or seduce mankind into false and dangerous 
directions ; because there are no absolutely evil or false spirits 
in any department of God's beautiful universe. To the reader 
this may appear only in the light of an unwarrantable asser- 
tion ; but to me it is a known truth. 

On this head, erroneously educated minds — those who have 


not outgrow: their early imbibed educational prejudices — will 
exclaim : " But how do we know this ? — we have not our 
' spiritual perceptions ' opened, and can not therefore gaze 
into the innumerable abysses of infinitude, and decide for our- 
selves, — how, then, shall we know that there are no evil spir- 
its?" And I would answer those who have thus hitherto 
based their faith upon the traditions of the past, that it does 
not require a particular spiritual insight to decide this ques- 
tion ; for, as has been shown in other portions of this volume,* 
there are no elements in the soul which can be proved to be 
intrinsically evil — ntf affections which entertain any real sym- 
pathy for unrighteous things ! This position I know to be 
invulnerable. Hence all the evil and corruption in this world 
are referable to a misdirection and a wrong application of 
intrinsically good and divine elements or impulses which re- 
side in the human spiritual constitution. I am consequently 
constrained to assert, that man is a~temple of the Holy Ghost, 
and the Holy Ghost is in man. Moreover, it is positively 
unrighteous to term misdirection "evil"- — because, the latter 
word is immersed in unphilosophical and erroneous associa- 
tions. We are educated in the past and present world-estab- 
lished church to associate " evil " with a " devil," or with de- 
moniac beings, which are altogether mythological ; and thus, 
by retaining and using " old bottles," we can not but keep at 
least the flavor of the " old wine " with them. But it would be 
well, since we have " new wine," to break the old vessels and 
procure " new bottles ;" for this is the only way to prevent 
an admixture of truth, and error in our philosophy of evil. 
Dropping the me'iphor, I simply mean that we should reject 
the term " evil," and substitute misdirection in its stead ; be- 
cause the latter term is truthfully and philosophically express- 
ive of the cause of those falsities and corruptions which swarm 
human society. Let us now follow this subject of evil spirits 
still further. The reader will surely remember — and I know 
his reason can not but acknowledge the naturalness of the 
statement — that all spirits and angels were once men like 
ourselves ; that God has unfolded and populated the spiritual 

Reference is licrc made to " Great Harmonist," vo.. 2, — soon to be issued. 

TRUTH AND M Y S T E 11 V . 89 

worlds by operating upon and through the material universe, — 
just as the luxuriant harvest is obtained from little germs, or 
as the gorgeous summer flowers unroll from beds of stone 
and clay. Therefore, since there are no spirits — no angels 
or archangels — which have not had an earthly or rudimental 
origin ; and since it is incontestably demonstrated that there 
are no intrinsically evil or fiendish principles, passions, or 
impulses in man's interior nature, we are constrained to con- 
clude that it is impossible that there should be evil spirits ex- 
isting in an}^ of the great realms of the spiritual universe. In 
this age of man's progression and development on the earth, 
let the oriental doctrine of "total depravity" be banished 
from our midst. Surely, no advanced mind now entertains 
a belief in that myth, because it is known to all healthy reas- 
oners that all the falsities, corruptions, and contradictions in 
human society are truthfully explainable only by reference to 
their three great and lamentable causes, namely — ignorance, 
misdirection, and misunderstanding. How, then, can the 
intellectual mind, in this era of human knowledge, be so un- 
reasonable and unphilosophical as to rush into the mythologi- 
cal doctrine of evil spirits as the only possible method of ac- 
counting for falsities, contradictions, and inconsistencies, in 
the so-called spiritual rappings ? Surely, the mind, resorting 
into that maze of ignorance, would find a much more difficult 
problem to solve, than he who intelligently perceives how 
plainly truth unravels these seeming mysteries. Truth is 
sublimely simple, and leads into no intricacies ; ^nd those who 
follow in her paths — with but the natural perceptions — will 
doubtless perceive that spiritual insight is no more required 
to decide the question of evil spirits than the Bible is neces- 
sary to the discovery of a ninth planet. But the logical in- 
tellect, which can readily understand that the spiritual uni- 
verse is an out-birth of the material universe, — and knows 
that the spirit-land is peopled by spirits whose genealogical 
history can be traced to some earth in space, — such a mind 
must acknowledge, that, inasmuch as- the doctrine of "total 
depravity" is false in the natural world, so the philosophy of 
the existence of evil spirits in the spiritual world can not be 


But there are different degrees of enlightenment and spir- 
ituality in the various societies of the spheres beyond life's 
first stage, even as there are different planets from which 
spirits emanate ; and from each and all of those planets the 
myriad souls, — moving in the vast ocean of human exist- 
ence, — are dissimilar one from another, differing in brightness 
and in beauty. Several centuries ago this truth in our phi- 
losophy was impressively stated, and we were eloquently told 
that every thing has a purity, a "glory" of its own ; and, by 
that glowing orator whose words have reached to our day,, 
we are counseled not to denounce earthly things as evil or 
corrupt merely because they are earthly ; for every created 
thing hath its own perfections and glories. And he proceeds 
to say, that, "there are celestial bodies, and bodies terres- 
trial : but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the 
terrestrial is another." And, as if to illustrate by metaphor 
the different degrees of perfection and divine enlightenment 
of the spirits in the spirit-land, he tells us that " there is one 
glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another 
glory of the stars ; for one, star differeth from another star in 
glory." And again, l3 enforce the sublime doctrine of eter- 
nal progression and development, — to illustrate that the hu- 
man soul is perpetually ascending from one degree and scale 
of perfection to another, and to explain to us that man, when 
his body dies, leaves his moral misdirection and misunder- 
standings principally on the earth, as he leaves his physical 
pains and diseases, — this fervent teacher affirms, in these 
words : " So is the insurrection of the dead : it is sown in 
corruption, it is raised in incorruption ; it is sown in dis- 
honor, it is raised in glory ; it is sown a natural body, it is 
raised a spiritual body. * * * And as we have borne 
the image of the earthy, we shall also hear the image of the 
heavenly, * * * For this corruptible must put on incor- 
ruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. * * * 
then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death 
is swallowed up in victory !" 

This impressive passage I quote from Paul — not because 
he is supposed by Christians to be above Nature and Reason 
in authority — but because his analogical reasonings, assisted, 


at that time, by his newly awakened intuitions, moved him, 
centuries ago, to the eloquent utterance of those truths which 
lie within every human soul. It is a joy to find, in past eras, 
the existing intuitional perception of those glorious truths 
which have become matters of demonstration in this more 
progressed period of the world. In Paul's style of analogical 
reasoning, we may continue to say, truthfully, — "We are 
born in ignorance, but we shall progress unto knowledge ; we 
are dwelling in misunderstandings, but we shall obtain wis- 
dom ; we live in this world in misdirection, but we shall at- 
tain unto harmony ; we believe in evil here, but we shall 
know better hereafter ; we live and move in darkness on the 
earth, and stumble into many errors, but in the spirit-land we 
shall have light, and the immortal radiance of truth shall guide 
us forever." Thus, sentence might be added to sentence in 
amplifying the philosophy that all evil is but imperfection tend- 
ing to its ultimate perfection. But enough has been already 
said to satisfy the logical mind that, even without entering 
the " superior condition/'— to investigate upon a higher plat- 
form what the spiritual eye can see of these immortal truths, — 
the intelligent natural perceptions — the material senses — here 
discover to us, and innumerable facts demonstrate, that the 
doctrine of evil spirits is fabulous, and, to the rightly educated, 
truly religious mind, it is blasphemous and prejudicial to the 
progression of thought and intelligence. 


In pursuing our investigation of the subject of sympathetic 
spirits, let me not be apprehended as affirming that all com- 
munications, received through the vibratory sounds, emanate 
from this class of minds in the second sphere, or that even 
those impressible spirits are under all circumstances governed 
in their decisions merely by sympathy. Neither do I affirm 
that all spirits, thus communing, can be involved or psycholo- 
gized by the positive mental sphere of a circle ; but I am im- 
pressed to declare the fact, that there is a certain class of un- 


advanced spirits who, under peculiar circumstances, — the 
very electrical medium of communication favoring the pro- 
cess of psychology, — will say precisely what the questioning 
minds of the circle may ardently, and, therefore, positively 
desire ; and this is one reason why palpable contradictions 
are sometimes spelled out through the electrical vibrations. 
And here many will say — " it is sad that we can not more 
implicitly rely upon the spirits." To such 1 would reply, — 
let us not blame them, but rather ourselves ; for we — or some 
other members of the circle — do not comply with the condi- 
tions upon which the spirits promise to faithfully respond to 
us. Again and again are we told, that perfect passiveness — 
a subjugation of our prejudices and anxious feelings — is ne- 
cessary that we may obtain truthful and reliable communica- 
tions ; and, when these conditions are not fulfilled, a disap- 
pointed experience reminds us that we have violated and de- 
ranged the prescribed laws of these communions. In truth, 
when we are anxious or impatient, we become intellectually 
positive, and then we exhale a magnetic atmosphere, while we 
inhale the necessary electrical emanations which rapidly ex- 
hausts the presiding medium, and the communications are 
thereby deranged, — becoming, as many persons have frequent- 
ly observed, contradictory and confused, and, perhaps, for the 
time being, altogether arrested. 

Affectionate spirits, — those dwelling in the, Love- Circles in 
the second sphere — are most negative, electrically speaking, 
and are therefore more readily influenced to approve the de- 
sires of the hearts of those with whom they commune on 
earth ; whilst, on the other hand, those spirits that dwell in 
the Wisdom Circles, are very positive, and are therefore in- 
capable of being involved in the mental atmosphere of any 
earthly minds. This principle of sympathy is illustrated in 
all divisions of human society ; it is daily exemplified in our 
midst. In our homes, the infant will, by virtue of its cries 
and positive entreaties, captivate the affectionate, and, per- 
haps, intelligent mother ; who consequently will forthwith 
coincide with her child's desires, — submitting her judgment 
to its powerful appeals ; whilst at the same time, the resolute 
father is unmoved by its tearfii. entreaties — he only consid- 


ers what is best for its welfare, and acts in accordance with 
his convictions. We would not hence charge that mother 
with a moral obliquity, nor are we to esteem the father as 
possessing a greater moral rectitude. The explanation of the 
yielding tenderness of the one, against the unbending stern- 
ness of the other, is to be found in the respective organic 
conformations and mental developments of the parents. 

Again, let us, from our homes, go into the popular revival 
religious meetings and further observe there the workings of 
this great psychological principle of sympathy. The clergy- 
man, with "his big, manly voice," is positively and dogmati- 
cally enforcing the doctrine of his creed : the awfulness of 
Divine justice ; the awfulness of Divine vengeance ; the aw- 
fulness of hell ; the terrible awfulness of hell-punishments ; 
the awful magnificence of heaven ; the awful necessity of 
salvation ; and the awful pivotal means upon which the whole 
scheme turns ; whilst he threatens the fearful consequences 
of not accepting those means forthwith. These and similar 
themes are represented by the speaker, the powerful psycholo- 
gist, to his audience, his generally passive and attentive 
subjects, with all the glowing beauty of brilliant language 
and the sublime strength of a positive temperament. Fasci- 
nated by his intellectual power, one after another draws 
nearer to the altar. Near by sit two equally honorable men ; 
both intelligent, but differently constituted. The one listens 
and meditates with an almost provoking indifference ; the 
other is moved to the center of his soul — his gesticulations 
express agony — the preacher has drawn a picture of awful 
terrors and has powerfully daguerreotyped it upon his mind, 
he sees the awfulness there represented, and the shadow is to 
him as a reality. Now let us examine into this. The un- 
moved individual has a cold, resolute, positive, intellectual 
organization — he is more positive than the speaker; and 
therefore that speaker can not awaken in him false compunc- 
tions of conscience. He can not convince the honest man 
that he is an "awful sinner." But this good man's equally 
good and honest neighbor possesses a fine, impressible, elastic, 
affectionate organization — he is very negative to the eloquent 
preacher, and hence " feels every thing the minister says to 


be true." Those very positive speakers always affirm what 
they pronounce ; it gives weight to their words, and invests 
them with a seeming authority. And what is the conse- 
quence of this psychological result ? It is simply this : that 
good man, that impressible and affectionate mind, is thrown 
into a frenzied state of moral contrition. He has hitherto 
been superior to the uttering of what was untrue ; but now 
he rapturously pronounces falsehood after falsehood. He 
says — "I'm under divine condemnation," which is not 
true. He says — "I'm inwardly depraved ;" which is not true. 
He says — "I've been always a great sinner;" which is not 
true, for he was once an innocent child, and of " such is the 
kingdom of heaven." He says — " God is angry with me ;" 
which is not true, for " God is love," and bitter and sweet, or 
love and hate, can not flow from one fountain. He says — 
" God's spirit is striving with me ;" which is not true, for he 
is simply psychologized, by the speaker, to see every thing re- 
specting his own state invested with awfulness, and himself 
as under the divine wrath and condemnation. At last he 
calls aloud — " O, Lsee the Holy Spirit !" which is not true; 
his vision is only affected by mental delirium tremens, arising 
from the excessive intoxication which the powerful preaching 
has produced upon his nervous system. And now, still moved 
by the controlling influence in the assemblage, he exclaims — 
" O, thank God, I am forgiven ;" which is not true, had he 
sinned, for no transgressions against nature's laws can be for- 
given, they can only be outgrown by personal progression 
and development. And thus the highly honorable and truth- 
telling member of society is captivated by the positive sphere 
of the clergyman, united with that of those of his congrega- 
tion who think with him, and is thereby made to utter many 
falsities and contradictions which, I trust, no one, at this day of 
scientific enlightenment, will attempt to account for on the 
ground of moral obliquity, or total depravity. Nor will any 
minds, except those who believe in mythological theology 
and supernatural interpositions, pronounce the other individ- 
ual to be incorrigibly wicked and graceless, simply because 
the exhorter w T as not sufficiently positive to throw him also 
into a psychological state. There is no doubt, however, that 


if that firm and calm temperament could have been affected 
by the united, mental force of numbers so as to have been 
made to feel "what the minister said" was true, he would 
nave arisen a spiritual Sampson in his strength, and with a 
still more powerful eloquence, he would have psychologized 
many other minds, — he would have completely subdued all 
those who had already been sympathetically acted upon by 
the clergyman, — they being negative to this accomplished 
convert, and yielding readily to his influence. Thus an en- 
tire congregation could be, by the propagation or dissemina- 
tion of this sympathetic magnetism, thrown into unparalleled 
emotion ; and the whole phenomenon wouli be ignorantly 
attributed to the direct interposition of the ' ; Spirit of God" 
or the Holy Ghost. 

Let the advanced intellect correctly understand, rightly 
appreciate, and not condemn this action of mind upon mind ; 
let us not call evil those kind spirits from the second sphere 
who sometimes impart contradictory thoughts through the 
sounds, because they are no more to be blamed for so doing 
than was the impressible good man, above mentioned, to 
blame for yielding to the power of the preacher. The con- 
tradictions only admonish us that we have inadvertently, or 
otherwise, deranged the equilibrium of the physical conditions 
on which the communications are made. Surely, there is 
nothing in all this to attribute to demoniac agency ; there is 
nothing evil in such sympathy ; it is the golden chain which 
binds all sentient existences together ; and, if we would pre- 
vent all misunderstandings and mistakes in our communings 
through sounds, let us conform to the great positive and neg- 
ative principles according to which all sympathy is harmony. 
It is a beautiful link in that everlasting chain — a principle, 
whereby those spirits, who are as yet but members of the Love- 
circles in the second sphere, respond sympathetically to the 
heart's desires ; like the fond mother they would bestow a 
present joy ; and this same principle of sympathy which has 
so often moved affectionate spirits to coincide with the wishes 
of the positive questioner, is the same as governed Ruth 
when she uttered those magnanimous expressions of tender 
devotion— :: Whither thou goes', I wil. go ; and where thou 


lodgest, I will lodge ; thy people shall be my people, and thy 
God my God." As you would not pronounce Ruth evil for 
this beautiful manifestation of affectionate sympathy, so 
should you not term evil those loving and impressible spirits 
who have acquiesced in our wishes and convictions because 
influenced so to do by the positiveness of our questions and 
entreaties. Thus it has been shown that there are three ac- 
tive causes of contradictions in these spiritual communica- 
tions, namely : 

1st. The ignorance of many of the spirits concerning the 
science of producing the vibrations ; 

2d. Our frequent misapprehension of the precise thought the 
spirits design to convey through the sounds ; 

3d. The presence of affectionate spirits who unconsciously 
glide into sympathy ivith the feelings and desires of the inter- 


Let us now proceed to consider how circles may be so 
formed as to avoid misapprehension and discord. We are 
taught that, in order to obtain good and lofty communications, 
it is positively essential that our thoughts and intentions be 
also good and elevated. A child-like simple-heartedness, a 
manly, open, and free-mindedness, combined with an honest 
love for truth, are indispensable pre-requisites. Moreover, 
it is essential that the circles be always organized and in- 
ternally constructed upon positive and negative principles. 
As there are twelve elements and attributes in every human 
soul, abstractly considered, so should there be twelve persons 
constituting a circle ; the twelve consisting of six males and 
six females. This distinction of male and female is not so 
essential to be observed with regard to sex ; but six of the 
number should possess the feminine attributes of character 
which are negative and affectionate, and the others should be 
decidedly masculine, having the positive and intelleckial tem- 
perament. Male and female are positive and negative prin* 


ciples ; and the terms should not be applied and confined 
exclusively to mere organizations ; for some individuals who 
wear the physical vesture of the male are, in their characters, 
females ; and vice versa. 

And first, in forming a circle for individual improvement 
and spiritual communion, the "medium," through whom 
"sounds" are made, and the clairvoyant who can discern 
spirits, should be situated at the head of a table. Then let 
the person w r hose electrical temperament is usually indicated 
by cold hands, and who possesses a mild and loving disposi 
tion, take his or her position on the immediate right of the 
medium or clairvoyant, upon whose immediate left should be 
seated one of a magnetic or warm physical temperament, 
being a positive and intellectual individual, and so let all the 
six female principles be situated on the right, and all the six 
male principles having their places fixed on the left, of the 
particular mediums, not exceeding two in number at a circle ; 
which mediums do not count among the number of twelve 
above specified. It is necessary that each person of the re- 
union be temperate in all his habits, free from intoxicating or 
stimulating beverages ; not suffering from pains or aches, and 
passive as to the results of the meeting. 

These circles should not make their sessions more frequent 
than twice a week ; because those things which become too 
familiar are thereby deprived of their sanctity, and hence 
also of their power to benefit the assembled individuals. The 
masses know not how to always associate respect with famil- 
iarity. For this reason it is good for most people, that 
" angels' visits are few and far between ;" because, were they 
as common as sunlight, or the possession of all our senses, 
many minds, I regret to say, would not only fall into a state 
of ingratitude, but they would neglect to properly appropriate 
the perpetual blessings flowing therefrom. Therefore, it is 
necessary to be careful that a too great intimacy with these 
things does not occasion an inappreciation of them. Let the 
sessions of these circles of Love and Wisdom be conducted 
with a religious dignity and harmony; which high conditions 
do not at all prohibit cheerfulness, intelligent mirth, or con- 
versation. Let music, elevating and gladdening, also enliven 



and lift up your hearts, to the end that spirits may paiticipate 
in the meiody of your souls, and echo in heaven the harmony 
of earth. Let your assemblages be indeed harmonial circles, 
where discord may not enter ; carry not there any unwind 
feelings ; take not there, to mar the beauty of those meet- 
ings, any sensations of envy or jealousy ; let no feelings of 
unforgiveness against a brother or a sister, be found by the 
angels in your souls, darkening the light within ; and remem- 
ber that not for these occasions only can you divest your- 
selves of selfishness, envy, jealousy, unkindness, and unfor- 
giveness — there is no occasional dress for the soul ; if you 
would substitute, for those deformities, the beautiful spiritual 
vesture of love, and gentleness, and purity,, then you must 
make such your familiar attire. The mind has no particular 
Sunday habiliments ; therefore as you clothe it for every-day- 
life, thus must it go adorned to the sanctuary. 

I am impressed to further direct that the rooms where the 
circles meet should, as much as possible, be retired from all 
noise and interruption ; that they should also be darkened, so 
that the persons present, not having their minds attracted 
and diverted by external things, may the more easily concen- 
trate their thoughts upon the object for which they have met 
together. Moreover, it would be well for the members of 
these circles of Love and Wisdom to provide themselves w T ith 
a fine magnetic cord. This will entertain, and amuse, and at 
last, perhaps, develop their mental powers. 

The Directions for making and using the Magnetic 
Cord. — Get about five yards of a three quarter inch rope ; 
cover this rooe with silk or cotton velvet; and wind around 
it, parallel with each other, two wires, one of steel and the 
other of silver or copper. Have the space between the wires 
about one inch and a half, and let them be wound about a 
quarter of an inch apart. The harmonial circle of friends 
may sit uniformly around the table, and let the magnetic roj>e 
lie on their laps, their hands upon or grasping it, and the one 
which is constitutionally most susceptible to spiritual influx 
of emotion and influence, will feel a throbbing in the hands ; 
and ultimately, by -repeated experiments, some one among 
the company may be rendered clairvoyant. I am not im- 


pressed to make any distinction with regard to the age of the 
individuals who enter into these spiritual associations. But 
manipulations will assist the impressible person to receive 
the propagative magnetism of the circle ; they will, also, 
greatly augment the mental tendency of the subject to enter 
one of four states, for which his organization may cherish a 
normal predisposition ; viz. the sympathetic, the neurological, 
the psychometrical, or the superior condition. 

In addition to the foregoing directions, I recommend the 
above diagram as representative of a " model circle" which 
should be formed in every community and in many families. 
After one circle is constructed, and the members have had a 
few evenings' experience, it will then be very easy to adopt 
such new measures and modes as the spirits, communicating 
through the vibrations or by influx into the understanding of 
a clairvoyant, may suggest and direct. The diagram repre- 
sents a table, with two mediums at the lower end, and twelve 
members — six positive and six negative principles or persons. 
The fine line, which connects the individuals, represents the 
" magnetic cord," the influence of which is to establish and 
preserve an equilibrium of vital electricity and vital magnet- 
ism throughout the entire circle. Let it be understood that 
the undeveloped mediums, or the already developed clairvoy- 
ants, are not to grasp the magnetic cord, because they are the 
substances or needles, (if I may be allowed the expression,) 
which the magnetism and electricity of the twelve members 
are to act upon, just as the horse-shoe magnet acts upon the 
piece of iron or steel. As soon as the circle of positive and 
negative principles or individuals shall have fully charged 
those who take the position of" mediums," then the latter will 


inevitably be thrown, by the descension of the higher influ- 
ence of spirits upon them, into a proper condition to impart 
'* impressions" to the circle, or else to become the medium. 
through which our invisible visitants from the spirit- "viprld 
will cause electrical vibrations to be heard, and thus commu- 
nicate their thoughts to man. When the cord has been held 
for one hour, the members may then cast it aside and join 
their hands. Another good method is, — all the members may 
lay their hands on the table, palm downward ; and each per- 
son in the circle allowing his left to remain under the right, 
and his right to rest upon the left, hand of the contiguous 
individual on either side of him. Do this for a period not less 
than twenty minutes. 

In the midst of these re-unions when the electrical sphere 
of the circle is rich and harmonious, the members may rest 
assured that guardian and affectionate spirits will descend, 
and sometimes come personally in the room. I have ob- 
served, with my spiritual perceptions, as many as eighteen 
spirits present at one session of a circle in the City of Bridge- 
port, Connecticut ; and, at the time of their actual presence 
with us, there was a large congregation of friendly spirits 
who, from a distance of eighty miles, (about thirty miles 
above the atmosphere of our earth,) directed a mighty column 
of vital electricity and magnetism, which current, penetra- 
ting all intermediate substances, passed through the roof and 
w r alls to the apartment where we were seated ; and there, by 
a process of infiltration, entered the fine particles of matter 
which composed the table and raised it several successive 
times, three or four feet from the floor! This circumstance 
of the table being so raised, can be testified to by the members 
of that circle. It is not, however, my object to prove the fact 
of these spiritual manifestations, (for of the facts of such 
occurrences thousands are already convinced by the exist- 
ence of sufficient evidence ;) but my impression is to furnish 
the philosophical explanation of them ; and hence I seek no 
particular or individual testimonies, because the entire phe- 
nomena now before the world, whose light may not at this 
day be hid, constitute one grand living demonstration that 
spirits do communicate with mankind. 


There are two classes of spirits who generally visit the at 
present established terrestrial circles. First — such spirits as 
have, in those circles, relatives according to the law of natural 
consanguinity, and such as feel attracted to us by ties of con- 
jugal and spiritual paternal affection. Second — those spirits 
that are delegates from the higher circles of wisdom and pro- 
gression in the second sphere — I mean, (as Swedenborg has 
expressed it,) representative or " subject spirits," who come 
to communicate, where a few have met together here, those 
messages to man which emanate from the superior societies 
of the inner world. The higher angels do not themselves 
come into immediate electrical relation with any terrestrial 
association of minds, but mediately, by and through represent- 
ative spirits. This mediatorial manner of communicating 
would not be adopted in higher circles here, could they at 
present be formed, consisting of spiritually enlightened and 
illuminated minds ; because, with these conditions existing, 
an immediate communication could be established between 
those higher angels and the members of such a truly harmo- 
nial circle, by direct spiritual influx and impression. To 
attain to this eminence the circles formed should press for- 
ward to the attainment of knowledge ; no fetters of creed 
and doctrine should stay their steps in progression. Truth 
will lead them into the broad fields of infinitude — into the 
illimitable expanse of Nature. And who among you will 
weary thus advancing — there investigating ? Who will let 
a bolt or a bar, w T hich superstition or bigotry may have placed 
in the way, arrest the mind's far searchings after God ? — 
Who will clasp close the clasps of his bible, and say, " thus far 
will I go and no farther," in seeking after truth ? Who will thus 
pronounce sentence against himself, and rest satisfied ? Will 
any man remain contented with words — words, which are at 
best but the drapery of truth — the shroud which " darkeneth 
counsel" ? No ! man's ever-searching, never-resting, eternal 
mind will not thus confine its investigations ! " Words with- 
out knowledge" shall not set bounds to thought. The undy- 
ing soul shall be taught forever from the everlasting volumes 
of Nature as one after another they unfold to its growing 
capacity. And mind shall study those books which are never 


closed, never " clasped with a clasp," — the ever open pages of 
God's Eternal Word ! This education can not be too soon 
commenced ; and spirits from higher spheres will assist in 
such tuition of the human mind, and will pour knowledge 
from above into the expanding intellect of the young immor- 
tal here, who by his own virtuous efforts reaches unto them, 
and thus becomes a pure recipient for the inflowings of truth ! 
Thus can the angels teach man ; though, on the earth but 
few, as yet, have been so taught to any extent, because of the 
as yet generally materialistic intelligence that only seeks for 
knowledge in the outer world, which pursuit diverts attention 
from the inner-life ; and thus all the avenues and receptive 
vessels in such minds are kept closed against an influx ol 
thoughts and impressions from spirits who would otherwise 
impart to us of heavenly things. Let us go to the earth- 
formed circles for spiritual communications as to angel- 
schools. Let us not go there with positive minds *to impress 
our teachers, but let us attend as passive pupils that we may 
be impressed ; and then, according to our capabilities of 
reception, will be imparted to us a higher or a lesser knowl- 
edge. Let us Wait patiently the impartations of the spirits, 
and not anticipate too ardently. Let the very impressible 
person present be careful that, by an over-officiousness of his, 
accompanying a quick perception of what the spirit is about 
to do, he does not interfere to assist in accomplishing that 
design, by which act the spiritual manifestation would be 
forestalled or ignorantly and unintentionally interdicted. 
One of these circles for improvement and investigation was 
recently formed in the City of Hartford, Connecticut, at 
which was present the " medium" who had presided at the 
meeting of friends in Bridgeport, where the above-related 
interesting occurrences were developed ; but, notwithstand- 
ing the harmony of the positive and negative arrangement of 
the different individuals in the later organized circle, no such 
startling manifestations occurred, in consequence of the me- 
dium being, during nearly every session of that circle, exceed- 
ingly susceptible to the mental sphere and magnetic power 
of spirits. By this magnetism his perceptions were quick- 
ened, and he would at tunes instantly perceive, and sympa- 


thetically perform, what the spirits contemplated to do them- 
selves, and thus, by his quick action, arrested their necessarily 
slower accomplishment of the design. This circumstance 
gave rise to many doubts and a few evanescent misappre- 
hensions ; but it was nevertheless a deeply interesting dem- 
onstration of the power of spirits to influence, under some 
circumstances, the human mind and direct its faculties of 
volition. We have noticed the power of this influence on 
the boy at Stratford, Connecticut, who, like the medium just 
referred to, would often sympathetically do what the spirits 
desired themselves to enact ; and, at times, he was so mag- 
netically affected by them as to be made to accomplish some 
things which, though particularly designed to do him and 
others good, were not always, at the time, regarded with a 
favorable eye. This leads me to briefly notice a very inter- 
esting kind of spiritual magnetism which some persons of a 
peculiarly negative temperament and organization are adapted 
to receive. I refer to spiritual communications which' some 
individuals receive by sensations rather than by sounds, 
through the electrical medium which pervades the nervous 
system. Such persons do not exhale, from the galvanic bat- 
teries of the nervous organization, a sufficient quantity of 
vital electricity whereby spirits can make the sounding vibra- 
tions. There is a certain state of mental susceptibility in 
which man's nervous system is exceedingly impressible ; and 
those spirits who are now pursuing the study of these things, 
and discovering to what extent their powers can operate 
upon organic and inorganic objects, will address such a sen- 
sitive mind through a breathing impression, or a wave-like 
vibration made upon the sea of nerves in the physical organ- 
ism. A person, subject to this psychological phenomenon, 
can converse with spirits and obtain answers from them, by 
vibrations or waving breathings which pass through the ner- 
vous system up to the brain, and awaken there thoughts by 
impression. It is a happy and useful combination of condi- 
tions, when an enlarged intellect and truth-seeking mind are 
united to this peculiarly susceptible nervous temperament ; 
for in that case heavenly results will flow therefrom. 

The spirits of the various planets in our solar system are 



in different stages of refinement. And those that arc? on the 
higher have the privilege of descending to the lower planets, 
and immersing their thoughts into the spirits of the inhabit- 
ants at will, though the latter in many cases know it not. In 
this manner do spirits descend to, and dwell on, the earth, 
when they have a peculiar attraction to some relative or 
friend ; and they are ever ready to introduce into his mind 
thoughts of higher things, and suggestions that are pure, 
though these may seem to the person to flow independently 
from the workings of his own spirit. Spirits from any sphere 
may, by permission* descend to any earth in the Universe, and 
breathe sentiments into the minds of others which are pure 
and elevating. Hence it is that there, are times when the 
mind appears to travel in the company of those it knows not, 
and has visions in its dreams that are actually true, and some- 
times come to pass with remarkable accuracy. At other 
times, dreams are incited by the influx of thoughts from 
spirits', but are not defined, because they are not duly directed. 
There is, however, a species of dreaming which is uncaused 
by any thing except an excitement of the nervous medium or 
consciousness of the body. Such dreams are only unquieted 
thoughts, and wild and fantastic formations of thoughts pre- 
impressed into visions and fancies. 

It is a truth that spirits commune with one another while 
one is in the body and the other in the higher Spheres — and 
this, too, when the person in the body is unconscious of the 
influx, and hence can not be convinced of the fact ; and this 
truth will ere long present itself in the form of a living 
demonstration.! And the world will hail with delight the 
ushering in of that era when the interiors of men will be 
opened, and the spiritual communion will be established such 
as is now being enjoyed by the inhabitants of Mars, Jupiter, 
and Saturn, because of their superior refinement. 

When the reader comprehends the philosophy of spiritual 
intercourse, and understands the great principle of mental 
affinity or gravitation in accordance with which all commu- 
nication between the inhabitants of the Material and Spirit- 

* That is, on conditions that the principles of spiritual affinity be complied with 
t See " Nature's Divine Revelations," page 675. 


ual universe must uniformly be developed, tnen ne can, with 
an understanding heart, turn to t\e Primitive History and 
read: — "Now, concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would 
not have you ignorant. ***** There are diver- 
sities of gifts, but by the same spirit* And there are differ- 
ences of administrations ***** g ut t h e manifes- 
tation of the spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 
For to one is given by the spirit the word of wisdom ; to an- 
other the word of knowledge by the same spirit ; to another 
the working of miracles ; to another prophecy ; to another 
discerning of spirits ; to another divers kinds of tongues ; to 
another the interpretation of tongues" — and thus the reader 
will begin to see, (through the clouds of words and diction 
which surround and obscure thoughts,) the great harmonial 
principles of spiritual intercourse as intuitively conceived of 
by those whose contemplations have been, and are, lofty and 

One type of intellectual or psychological phenomena which 
the inhabitants of this world may expect soon to witness, is 
very properly described in the following letter which I re- 
cently received from a very worthy and intelligent gentle- 
man, residing in the state of New York. During the last 
eighteen months I have received numerous letters, describing 
singular and positive instances of spontaneous somnambulism 
and trance, which instances naturally arrange themselves 
under the head of involuntary clairvoyance. And the 
directions which I have been impressed to institute in this 
pamphlet, for the purpose of eliciting spiritual communications, 
will apply very properly to nearly all subjects of these mental 
and spiritual phenomena. The writer of the following letter 
accompanied his statements with reference to various citizens 
of New York City, and otherwise furnished sufficient external 
evidence that his averments are perfectly truthful. It will be 
perceived that this case, (which the gentleman describes, 

* The good Apostle, by particular influx, informs me that the sentence — "but 
by the same spirit," should be every where s read, " but by the same Principle.^ 
— thus giving mankind to understand that all spiritual manifestations are bin 
modifications and divers l?d developments of one universal and unchangeable 
law of Nature 


without intends g his communication to appear in print,) 
presents the most certain and unmistakeable evidence of the 
existence, in the mental constitution of man, of discerning 
powers far excelling in their scope and quality the vision 
of the outer senses. The finding of the " mourning ring" 
which "had been in the earth a great many years/' and "other 
gold pieces," is a practical and sensuous demonstration of 
spiritual perception of facts and things, without the aid of the 
corporeal organs of discernment, which the external and su- 
perficial investigators of this era have so long and vehemently 
demanded. But this is only one instance among hundreds 
which might be cited as evidence of the actuality and prac- 
ticability of faculties of interior vision, immanent in every 
human mind. 

Waterford, N. Y., 3d Feb., 1851. 
Mr. A. J. Davis : 
Dear Sir, — 

I am influenced solely by a motive of public good in ad- 
dressing you. I will be brief. There is now living on one 
of my farms, a lady of most extraordinary magnetic condition. 
I was made acquainted with her in the summer of 1849 ; and 
spent most of that summer in her house. She is entirely, (or 
nearly so,) uneducated, and has been afflicted with what her 
physician denominated " hysteric fits." She had been treated 
by him, without the least success, for four years. At the time 
I speak of, her symptoms were as follows : She would sud- 
denly lose all her consciousness of the identity of those 
around her, (their appearance being changed,) her coun- 
tenance flushed — wildness of the eyes — and every thing ap- 
pears to her of a green color. Sometimes the hand will 
convulse so strongly that she can not let go of whatever she 
may have grasped. Other times, the convulsions will run 
down the arm into one hand then into another, and pass 
from one member of the body to another — to and from 
the tongue, arms, &c. &c. — with the velocity of electricity. 
In this "waking state" — slifty- often very fluent in conversa- 
tion — filled with lofty sentiments of honor. Her bearing is 
proud and exalted ; her countenance often transccndently 


bnght, her eyes beaming with a sweet and almost super- 
human luster. Suddenly she drops from this condition into 
a kind of mesmeric sleep — when convulsions frequently en- 
sue, and then, after a short time, she awakes. I have held 
her hand at such times, and the sensation is like the shock 
from the galvanic battery. I said she lost the identity of her 
friends. Yes, but while in this condition, without seeing a per- 
son, the moment her friends touch her hand she knows them. 

I invited this lady to my house, satisfied in my own 
mind, that it was a case of " Self-Magnetism" — or " Spon- 
taneous Magnetism." She had been at my residence, per- 
haps, an hour, when she went into this condition. I have 
no time to relate what occurred, — suffice it to say — that 
she became lucid, and truthfully related the transpiration 
of distan^events ! She also stated that she saw a gold ring, 
and directed us to it ! We found it, in the road by her personal 
aid on the spot, ten inches below the surface, in the hard 
ground. This road runs over a place that, forty years 
ago, was a burying ground. This ring is an old-fashioned 
mourning ring, and bears evidence that it had been in the 
earth a great many years. She also found other gold pieces. 
But I can not go into details — I am fearful of troubling 
you. But what I wish to bring more particularly before 
your mind, is this : — While under treatment for " hyster- 
ics" (!) she greatly surprised me one day by her steady gaze, 
and the extraordinary expression of her countenance — no- 
thing can surpass the beauty of that expression. She said, 
when questioned, that she saw her father, (who was dead,) and 
described the " Spirit- World," (on her recovery from this 
condition,) in a style peculiarly your own. Is there not 
something in this case, that may be made of benefit to mankind? 

The name of this lady is Mrs. Hannah . She is highly 

esteemed for her many virtues. 

Pray, sir, Jet me hear from you on this subject. 

Yours, truly, P. J . 

The class of spiritual phenqugpa to which this lady's state 
and manifestations properly belong, is one that should arrest 
the attention of scientific men — men, who are not altogether 


absorbed in the effects of principles, but rather in the interior 
moving causes. It will be perceived, by those who read 
works on psychological science, that history contains many 
similar instances of spiritual magnetism and spontaneous 
illumination of the internal powers of the understanding, 
primarily caused by nervous impressibility and disease. For 
instance, — I find many important discoveries and revelations 
among the Germans, — owing very much to their peculiar 
habits of thinking, and of investigating all seen and unseen 
laws and operations of Nature ; and among them have been 
persons whose interior perceptions were so unfolded as to en- 
able them to recognize the reality of the spirit- world, and its 
close connection with this rudimental sphere. One should 
be noticed particularly, because her mind was in a condition 
occupied by all at the period of death or transformation. 
She is known as the Seeress of Prevorst — and has re- 
vealed many truths concerning the connection between the 
natural and .spiritual world, and between the soul and body ; 
and concerning the powers of spiritual perception, and the 
medium by which the spirit is united with the form. Her 
interior and natural state were, however, too frequently con- 
fused and blended to elevate her conceptions of the other 
life much above her early education ; and her intense suffer- 
ings were, also, lamentable barriers to a perfect ascension of 
her spirit into the tranquil sphere of Truth. These things 
are too important to escape the attention of any inquiring 
mind; for they manifestly involve evidences such as man- 
kind at present need to satisfy them of the powers of the 
soul, and of other physiological truths.* 

If the reader desires to comprehend the principal causes of 
what is customarily called Salem Witchcraft, (as it occurred 
many years ago,) then "et him investigate the phenomena of 
spirits acting upon human minds by first addressing their ivill 
and electrical elements to the nervous system of the subject. 
This process, though no mystery now, was a few years since 
— especially in Salem — regarded as the open manifestation 
of Satan or of some str^ft malady, closely connected 

* See " Nature's Divine Revelations," page 584. 


with demonism or enchantment. In former periods of the 
world, the subjects of these spiritual communications either 
through the mediatorial agency of the nervous system, or the 
electrical vibrations, would legally be condemned and com- 
pelled to pass through the trials which the unfortunate Salem 
mediums experienced. But the age of religious intolerance 
is past ; the rack and the rod are powerless means of secta- 
rian torture ; and the honest man is now permitted, (partic- 
larly in America,) the gratification of thinking and speaking 
as his reason and conscience dictate. The human mind is 
now more than ever the Lord of Creation. 

The physiology of the mind, — its laws, tendencies, forces 
and functions, — should early engage the attention of him 
who, according to popular standards of judgment, takes the 
position, and acts in the important capacity, of a physician. 
I am persuaded that the lady, who has been so long treated 
for " hysterics," is more capable, in her moments of extasis 
or illumination, of prescribing for herself than any physician 
in the' country. In order to develop her powers harmoni- 
ously, I refer those who can take charge of her interesting 
case, to the directions for forming circles, which, if fol- 
lowed, will quiet her present state of excitement and bring 
her mind into a high state, favorable to periodical and useful 
illumination. Let her be a member of a circle ; and, in a 
few sessions, she will doubtless yield to its soothing magnet- 
ism. Manipulations are not in such cases required. 

Miss , of Connecticut, has recently experienced the 

influence of spirits upon her physical system. Yielding 
her mind to passiveness, she has received several very inter- 
esting communications. The origin of this phenomenon in 
her own case she describes as follows, — I introduce a brief 
history of her experience in this place as illustrative of a 
principle of action which any impressible individual may 
adopt with the indwelling wish to obtain personal evidence 
of spiritual presence and power. 

At the suggestion of a female friend, who supposed she had 
been similarly acted upon by spirits, Miss , after retir- 
ing for the night, laid her arm on the outside of the bed, with 
this desire — "if there be any spirits near me, will they mani- 


fest their presence by moving nvy hand ?" A few nights 
passed without any results. At length one night, as her arm 
lay carelessly and passively on the bed, she experienced an 
invisible attraction operating upon her hand, and, by not in- 
terposing her will to restrain its motion, the unseen power 
moved her arm about in various directions. This inteiftsting 
evidence of spiritual presence was furnished her repeatedly, 
and uniformly at her request. Having become almost per- 
fectly convinced that her experience did not proceed from. 
her own volition or imagination, she resolved to venture fur- 
ther, and requested the invisible beings to supply her with 
appropriate "signals" for a negative and an affirmative, that 
she might hold converse with them. This desire was imme- 
diately responded to by the spirit who acted upon her arm 
and hand, conveying the latter to her chin and then to one 
side in an almost horizontal direction. She concluded that 
one motion signified " yes," and the other " no ;" but did not 
know exactly how to understand them ; and asked — " does 
the first motion mean an affirmative ?" and her hand was di- 
rectly conveyed to her chin, and then, as before, moved off 
in the side direction when she desired a negative. She now 
believed that, if these motions did in reality originate with 
spirits, her hand might as easily be conducted to the different 
letters of the alphabet. Accordingly she chalked out the , 
alphabet on the cover of a chest, and placed herself near it, 
in an easy posture and tranquil state, with the quiet wish 
that something might be spelled out to her. Soon her hand 
was moved and placed upon a letter, which she recorded ; 
then upon another, and another, until a clear and consistent 
sentence was constructed. She affirms that at first she did 
not preconceive of the letter to which her hand was being 
conducted ; nor did it then occur to her what word the spirits 
designed to spell out in this novel manner. However, after 
a little experience, her mind readily conceived of the letter, 
and then of the word, which was to be given her ; and thus, 
by direct mental impressions, many very beautiful admoni- 
tions and affectionate sentences or communications have 
come from the spirits of the departed, through her, to their 
friends and acquaintances on the earth. She has received 


numerous " signals," each of which indicate the immediate 
presence or influence of some particular spirit. These sig- 
nals consist of divers motions into which the arm, hand, and 
fingers are carefully and gracefully thrown. She says she 
can easily resist these motions by an exercise of volition ; 
but such resistance is almost invariably attended with heavy 
achings and pain in that member of her body which the un- 
seen power had previously manifested, a disposition to move. 
I am impressed to consider this lady's experience* as typical 
of a class of spiritual phenomena which many persons will 
ere long develop and present to the world. And I am also 
impressed to regard her manifestations, not as demonstra- 
tional evidences that spirits are near this earth, and can com- 
municate with its inhabitants, but rather as an illustration of 
a Truth with which numerous minds are already sufficiently 
impressed — and who, consequently, are no longer in search 
of "tests" and "evidences," but who desire to hear from 
friends in the Spirit-Land, and to live in constant harmony 
with the immutable principles of Love and Wisdom, by which 
alone the heavenly hosts are actuated and governed. 

The following passages will illustrate the character and 
impressiveness of most of her communications, — the two first 
which follow purported to come — as I know they did — from 
the spirit of a gentleman who recently died in California, ad- 
dressed to a brother in this world, and were received on the 
8th and 9th of February, 1851 :— 

" My brother dear ; the spirit-world is indeed a world of 
harmony ; and where harmony is, there is happiness ! In the 
pursuit of knowledge, let wisdom be' your guide, and you ivill 
progress to meet me in the second sphere. Let love prevail 
over all unkindness ! Love and hatred can not dwell together 
— one will consume the other ! 

" My brother, — there are beauties in the spirit- world far ex- 
ceeding human conception, and language is too feeble to give 
them utterance." 

* She does not feel it to be her duty to devote her experience to the world, and 
hence I purposely conceal from the public her name and residence. I could ad- 
duce the testimony of her most intimate friends to substantiate these statements, 
but this is deemed unnecessary. 


To the reader the above communication can not possibly 
contain any thing like that internal evidence of truthfulness 
and signification which the earthly brother felt, and knew it 
to possess, on its reception ; also he was deeply impressed 
with the following : — 

" Will my brother remember that I am ever ngar him ? 1 
love him with such love as angels feel who have no uncongenial 
influences to retard their progress ! 

" O, my brother — could you but feel life's harmonious breath- 
ings as I now experience it, you ivould rejoice with joy unspeak- 
able ! Dear brother, when troubled, think of me /" 

These communications illustrate how noble and affection- 
ate, intelligent and holy, the inhabitants of the spirit-land 
become subsequent to their emancipation from earth's slave- 
ry, trials and temptations. But it is not strange that spirits 
are so loving and wise i Nay, we ourselves could be nearly 
as good and enlightened if, as in the spirit-heavens, " the Sun 
of Righteousness" had arisen in our interior firmament, — 
spreading light and freedom, love and intelligence, over the 
souls and habitations of men ! 

The following is from the spirit of a Mother in the spirit- 
land to her daughter in this world : — " My daughter, I love to 
be near you ! Angels will protect you from all harm ! Mother 
will ever be near her dear child !" 

When the above was communicated, January 7th, 1851, 
the lady, through whom it came, in the manner heretofore 
described, had her hand differently acted upon, and the father 
of the daughter announced his presence, and desired to com- 
municate a message, (the following,) which is entirely char- 
acteristic of him as he was known while on this earth. Even 
this very sentence he frequently used ; but the medium was 
never acquainted with him, and hence did not know any thing 
with regard to his manner of speaking : — 

" Overcome evil with good, my child ; may every blessing 
attend you." 

Thirty-two days after the above was communicated, the 
Father again came from the spirit-land. He announced his 
presence by his "signal," which the medium instantly recog- 
nized by the peculiar motion which he had before given to 


her hand and arm ; and the following was imparted by him 
to his daughter, word for word : — 

" I am near you, my daughter, — a father s love will never 
cease in its influence over you ! Will my daughter remember 
that a father's love is not diminished by a residence in the 
spirit-land ? The love of angels far exceeds the love of earthly 
minds ; for as the mind expands, we take a more comprehen- 
sive view of the height and depth of the beauties of Harmony. 

" Let not the trials of earth disturb the spirit of my dear 
child ; let a holy influence steal over her mind as she contem- 
plates the beauties of Divine Love and Divine Wisdom ! 

" The mission of my child is a mission of love. Go on, dear 
child, — the consciousness of having done good to the world, 
will greatly increase your happiness. Let the golden chain of 
love unite soul to soul; that all unkindness maybe overcome by 
its sweet influenced 

The following, from a grandmother in the spheres to her 
children in this world, was received through the same medi- 
um, (Miss ,) by the peculiar process of having her finger 

placed by the spirit upon the different letters of the alphabet, 
which, w 7 hen combined and punctuated, read thus : 

"My children dear :, all spirits have been subjected to trials 
in the flesh ; they are now free, and will do all in their power 
to alleviate those who are now in bondage. Spirits joyfully 
sustain their dear friends, even when they know it not, under 
Love's sweet and holy influences" 

The medium's grandmother has been for many years in the 
Second Sphere, and consequently possesses much enlighten- 
ment concerning the preparations which many spirits have 
made, and are constantly making, to communicate their high 
truths and affectionate sentiments to man. And one day, as 

Miss was asking herself the question — " how do spirits 

do this ?" — she received from her grandmother the following 
philosophical explanation : — 

" You have a mind susceptible to spiritual impressions ; and 
spirits are joyfully endeavoring to keep you in subjection. Fol- 
low spiritual direction, and you ivill progress and be happy." 

From another spirit, which frequently communicates with 
her, she received the following interesting passage which, like 


all the foregoing and succeeding impartations, is particularly 
adapted to the moral reformation and encouragement of the 

" Very enlightened spirits will teach you truths so that you 
can communicate to others. Seek wisdom to guide you. Soon 
shall truth triumph over error; and Natures laws shall be 
obeyed ! Universal love shall triumph over selfishness ; and 
soon truth will save enslaved minds from bondage.'' 

Those who affirm that nothing c* any importance has as 
yet emanated from these spiritua. manifestations, should 
calmly meditate upon the comprehensive injunctions and 
moral admonitions which these few sentences embrace. 
There is truth enough in these communications to reform 
and purify the world. On the lSth of January, 1851, the 
medium experienced a new action of some unseen influence 
upon her hand and arm. Presently a male spirit, who did 
not give the name by which he was known on, earth, spelled 
out through her the following : — 

* Sweet and truthful seekers after spiritual truths shall be 
spiritually enlightened. Spirits are joyfully seeking truthful 
mediums. Keep a calm and serene mind, ever susceptible to 
spiritual impressions, always faithful -to Justice, Truth and 

Again, on the 30th day of January, 1851, and when the 
medium was not expecting any communications from the 
interior world, her arm and hand were strongly acted upon, 
and the following was imparted to her, word for word, as it 
is written. It is truly a voice fiom the spirit-land — a sweet 
message of encouragement to a pilgrim here. It comes from 
a very dear brother, according to the laws of consanguinity, 
who passed from this rudimental existence in infancy, and 
who, consequently, has progressed, grown up, and received 
an education, in the midst of those immaculate, beings and 
heavenly influences which distinguish the spirit-world from 
t lie scenes of earth. 

" Tell sister dear, I am ever near her ; and, I love her, with 
the love of an angel-brother. When she is troubled, tell her tc 
flunk of me ! I urill be with her in sickness and in health ; 
md will speak to lit r of bright scenes beyond earth" 


He will " speak" to her ; he will breathe into her soul 
thoughts of the spirit-land; death has not divided them, and 
the grave is no barrier between souls that are attracted one 
to another. Is not this a happy thing to be learned in a 
world which ignorance has hung in mourning for the dead ? 
It is lifting the crape, and revealing that there are no dead f 
And yet it is asked — " what good can these things do ?" 
Admitting that there are such things occurring as mysteri- 
ous " rappings" and unaccountable manifestations — " what 
benefit is to be derived therefrom ?" " Can there any good 
thing come out of Nazareth ?" Such is the language of the 
skeptic and of the incipient inquirer ; but these are gentle 
words, and silver sounds, compared with that voice, upon the 
earth, which cries out against every new messenger of Truth, 
the sound of which reverberates from Calvary, repeats from 
mount to mount, echoes from age to age, responds from 
tongue to tongue, and mutters now, " Away with him, away 
with him." — " Crucify him, crucify him." Yes, the same 
voice of ignorance and sectarianism that spoke so loud 
eighteen hundred years ago, still hoarsely whispers its anath- 
emas. The same spirit of intolerance yet lives, to revile, to 
judge, and to condemn. What matters it that one, whom 
sectarians have crucified, has told them to " revile not," to 
"judge not," to "condemn not" — what matters it to them? 
The spirit which once nailed him to the cross, to-day would 
pierce his hands and feet, and thrust the sword into his side 
again. Still the religious bigot would kill the guiltless ; 
would shed innocent blood ; would slay the " Lamb of God." 
Yea, erroneously educated and prejudiced minds would 
destroy him who comes to bring more light into the world. 
For more light would reveal their errors — it would show the 
rottenness of taeir cherished idols, and hidden things would 
thereby be made manifest. They who are thus in the dark 
shrink from more light — they would put out the light, and 
their cry is — " away with it, away with it." Accustomed to 
darkness, educated in it, and erroneously taught that God's 
gift, the light of reason, must be shrouded and entombed, the 
human soul gropes through its night of existence here — the 
spark or heaven within smothered lest it should illume a 


different path than that which earth's custom and popular 
opinion sanction — lest it reveal what deified priests have 
not taught, what a canonical book does not inclose, what a 
certain theological creed does not circumscribe ; in a word, 
lest it teach that to which opinion has not set bounds, and that 
which the walls of a church can not confine. He who dares 
to look beyond these sacerdotal inclosures, who has the 
courage to be guided, by the light of God in his own heart, 
away from this mythological darkness which mankind have 
in the infancy of the race created ; he, who is thus daring, is 
emancipated from slavery — " the truth makes him free" — and 
henceforth he walks in light, and light, more light, is bursting 
ever upon his liberated mind. The few are thus strong and 
are thus blessed ! but, alas, to the many — 

" Opinion is an omnipotence — whose veil 
Mantles the earth with darkness, until right 
And wrong are accidents, and men grow pale 
Lest their own judgments should become too bright, 
And their free thoughts be crimes, and earth have 
too much light." 

Lest man, made in the image of God, should grow too 
much like unto God ; should learn to " know good and evil ;" 
and " put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and 
live forever ;" lest he should become " perfect as our Father 
in heaven is perfect." Yea, lest by the light of reason, man, 
progressively growing more glorious, may feel and conse- 
quently proclaim himself to be " the son of God" — and, fsel- 
ing how beautifully, how harmoniously, how philosophically, 
how truthfully he is a part of the Great Whole, the elevated 
mind can not but exclaim, "I and my Father are one.' 
This is the light which the world now rejects. " It shinetb 
in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not." Bu<* 
even centuries ago, ignorance and sectarianism could not ex 
tinguishthat light ; notwithstanding the temples, through which 
it beamed, were destroyed ; and all that man, in his ignor- 
ance, could do to prevent its development and expansion waa 
done ; and notwithstanding, for many succeeding ages, the 
cross, the rack, the dungeon, the stake, and the gallows, were 
employed as instruments to put out this " light which cometh 


into the world," still it burneth brighter and brighter. And 
ever are found pure and indomitable persons ready to be 
crucified, to be consumed, to be broken on the wheel of tor- 
ture, to mount any scaffold, there to hold up aloft, for the 
gathered multitudes to see, the Light which is Life and immor- 
tality, and which death can not destroy. But not thus, to- 
day, do the sons of God perish from the earth because of the 
light that is in them — no more are the temples of the Holy 
Ghost (or divine spirit) thus desecrated, because their inward 
light shines — nay, for already from the most enlightened 
parts of the earth truth has swept away the external instru- 
ments of torture, — those implements of darkness which the 
past cherished, untill light shining on the world revealed their 
existence and exposed their hideousness. But still the 
elements of sectarian bigotry and persecution lie hidden in 
many human minds, especially in those intolerant intellects 
from whence the wild cry goes forth — to " burn" — to "hang," 
the unoffending " medium" of light sent from above. Yes, 
the language which now falls from the lips of the professing 
and dogmatic Christian, is — " hang the witches" — " burn the 
sorcerers." These misdirected minds would rejoice in be- 
holding " agony, and bloody sweat," till they could, if possi- 
ble, wring from their helpless victims (the children of our 
heavenly Father,) the despairing cry — " My God, my God — 
why hast thou forsaken me ?" But times are changed ; the 
world's progress will not now permit these sectarian feelings, 
(which the present inherits from the past, and which man 
has not yet outgrown,) to be carried into public and outward 
execution. Such despotic sentiments must now remain in 
the unhappy intellect which gave them birth, and there tor- 
ture the mind that nourishes them. They who indulge 
such thoughts will find but little relief in merely giving them 
lip-utterance, and hearing them echoed by the ignorant — or, 
perhaps, lisped by their little ones, into whose hearts they are 
ingrafting curses instead of blessings, hate instead of love, 
stifling the harmony of their natures, and stringing their souls 
to discord — such, from out of the mouth will pray to God 
" Thy kingdom come," and then do all they can to prevent 
the development and progress of that kingdom on the earth ; 


they will set the lamb against the lion, and the lion against 
the lamb; they will not let them "lie down" in peace 

But we should pity the unkind individual that reviles, 
judges, and condemns. Because within that misdirected and 
undeveloped mind there is a dungeon and a scaffold ; there 
is darkness there — and death, for no man hath passed from 
death unto life unless he loves the brethren. And the victim 
in that prison, the executed there, is the reviler who reviles 
— the judge who judges — the condemner who condemns ! for 
when the unhappy fanatic, the wretched victim of misdirected 
passion, would imprison, burn, hang, crucify — then, the 
prison is in his own soul, the flames consume his own bosom, 
his own life is suffocated, the nails pierce his own quivering 
nerves. These tortures go not forth from him to reach the 
pure in heart who only seek to see God — they come not 
where he treads, guided onward by the angel of the mind, 
through " paths of pleasantness" and " ways of peace" — for, 
should the sound of revilings fall upon his ear, it would 
only awaken pity in his heart ; pity for the suffering and 
contracted soul from which it issues ; for such are to be 
pitied, — they have no heaven! But he who loves God 
most, and his " brother as himself," rejoices whilst he pities 
those who " persecute and despitefully use" him ; whilst 
grieving that they shut themselves out of heaven, he rejoices 
that their hell is not forever. It is the good man's delight 
to know that, if not in this sphere of life, the ignorant and 
uncharitable must, in the progression of. time, in the wor^d 
to come, outgrow their errors ; and eventually that they, too, 
will walk in light with the angels ! — I say in time— yes, for 
time is a portion of eternity, on this earth, and in all worlds ; 
in this first sphere of existence, and in all the succeeding 
spheres of life. 

lie, out of whose dogmatic and sectarian mind proceeds 
condemnation ; he who will not seek that he may find ; he, 
though he knows it not, loses much of ineffable enjoyment 
in this present era of spiritual manifestations. To such, no 
voice, from heaven, speaks — such, will only listen to sounds 
from the tombs of the past ; by them, the pleasant tone of 


the present, proclaiming the innumerable delights r/ the 
future, is unheard ; but to the individual whose longings are 
after immortality — to him whose mind searches after the in- 
finite and would penetrate the mysteries of Godliness — to the 
human spirit which lifts itself up to the divine, — to such, the 
stupendous revealments of this era of the world disclose 
the blissful joys of a more universal angelic communi- 

The enlightened investigator will distinguish between the 
spiritual and the human, to the end that heaven may' not be 
accused of that which originates on the earth ; but the igno- 
rant and superstitious, the slave and victim of erroneous 
education, will hasten to proclaim all new developments to 
be "devilish" — "vile" — "blasphemous." Such a spirit in 
Christendom, which thus continues to denounce and not 
investigate, is none other than that which moved the Jews 
to accuse Jesus of " casting out devils through the prince 
of the devils." Yea, the same inquisitorial spirit is still 
alive ; not yet are its revilings hushed ; and those, out 
of whose misdirected minds these insults come, will even 
now, in our age, as the same class did ages ago, meet an 
angel in their path, and say to him — " thou, hast a devil ;" 
but now, as then, " they know not what they do ;" and 
now, as then, the angel voice exclaims — " Father, forgive 
them !" The pure and truthful spirit gently answers its 
accuser — " I have not a devil, but I honor my Father, and 
ye do dishonor me." How mild are these accents ! Here no 
combativeness is aroused ; for this response is truly from 
heaven, let it fall from what lips it may ; other language 
than this, God's messengers do not use. If, therefore, a dif- 
ferent expression come through the sounds to us, or reach 
our minds in any other way, then we may be sure that human 
misdirection and misunderstanding mingle with what we 
hear. But when we see that, by these revealments, the un- 
happy atheist has been brought to a belief in God and immor- 
tality — -the wretched unbeliever become a blessed believer ; 
when we behold the " broken heart bound up" — " the bruised 
reed" tenderly cared for — the bereaved mourner rejoicing 
for the " lost which is found" — the erring turning from their 


misdirected ways — the heart, from which once issued bitter- 
ness, giving forth sweetness, and overflowing with love in- 
stead of hate ; when we see the once morally-deformed out- 
growing their infirmities, and gradually becoming more and 
more like unto the angels — and when we also behold that 
" the blind see," the " lame walk," and " the deaf hear" — ■ 
then, let us not say of that, by which these things come, " it 
is evil ;" let us not say, of those through whom these bles- 
sings flow, from God, to us — " they have Beelzebub, and by 
the prince of the devils, they cast out devils" — nay, but 
rather let us acknowledge that by the spirit of Truth it is 
done, and that by it, " God's kingdom" may be unfolded on 

Those moralists and theologians who think that all the 
startling and mysterious phenomena of this fertile century 
are alone referable to the machinations and caprices of evil- 
disposed persons in this world, whose volition and other 
mental faculties are overpowered or disturbed, in their nat- 
ural operations, by the systematic interposition of invisible 
evil beings of superior power, should dispassionately con- 
sider the goodness and moral strength of these simple apho- 
risms and admqjaitions. The medium, Miss , through 

whom they came, sustains a character for truth and integrity 
above impeachment. The following emanated from a very 
dear brother, now in the spirit-land, to his brother on the earth. 
It was imparted in the manner heretofore described, namely, 
by electrical action upon the nervous system of the medium, 
from which she derives her impressions. 

u Attend to spiritual direction, brother dear, understand, — 
so that truth and knowledge shall be sensibly, sincerely, and joy- 
fully experienced by you. Joy and peace will always restore 
tranquillity. Seek wisdom to guide you, and all will be well, my 
brother. Always do what is right, and you will be happy. Be 
cautious * — be wise f — and hind. % Spirits will watch over you ! 

* Caution is the armor to defend us against imposition and the aggressions of un- 
righteousness." — Anon. 

t" A wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge inc'easeth strength." — 
Primitive History. 

i" Be ye kind one to another, tender h«arted: M — Ibid, 


As you are susceptible to improvement, so far will spiritual 
truth be appreciated and loved by you. 11 

The candid reader can not but be intellectually interested 
and morally improved by these sweet emanations from the 
spirit-land. They are gentle and affectionate, clear and pos- 
itive, penetrative and exalting. They come to us like the 
whisperings of an invisible Divinity — sacred breathings of 
angelic intelligence. They momentarily encourage us to re- 
construct the internal mechanism, to properly arrange the 
secret springs, to harmonize the controlling interests, of hu- 
man society, to the end that temporal and eternal things 
may be so conjoined as to yield only joys unspeakable and 
moral rest. They teach sweet charity, and bid the mind 
look up to where — 

" High on yon scroll, inscribed o'er Nature's shrine, 

Live in bright characters the words divine : 
' In life's disastrous scenes to others do 

What you would wish by others done to you !' 

— Winds ! wide o'er the earth the sacred Law convey, 

Te nations hear it ! and ye Kings obey !" 

The following passage emanated indirectly, (that is, by in- 
forming another spirit what to impart,) from a high inhabit- 
ant of the superior sphere. It is addressed to one on the 
earth whose chief desire is the elevation of the down-trodden 
— the emancipation of the enslaved. It utters the great truth 
that all bondage is wrong. Therefore, to those who are la- 
boring in the uncultivated fields of humanity, where the 
poisonous weeds of slavery grow, and where the deadly 
vipers of ignorance, cruelty and misery crawl, — to such 
minds, the following communication will sound like a voice 
from heaven. 

" Dear Brother : — A love of Justice, Truth, and Deity, 
saves a world from Sorrow, Trouble, Superstition, and Slavery, — 
and Wisdom, unfolded, shall save souls. Good spirits below, are 
always attended with spiritual influences from above ; and spirits 
of the second sphere are ever looking on to take a view of scenes 
surrounding the earth's inhabitants. Joyful truths are unfolded 
through a medium so true and pure ; and scenes delightful are 


just beginning to be appreciated. Joy and peace be with you, 
brother dear ; joyful spirits are ever near you /" 

It will be perceived that the ruling love among angelic 
beings, is the love of Truth !* The medium is particu- 
larly and frequently visited by a female spirit who has re- 
sided in the spirit-land about twenty years, and who, there- 
fore, has become highly learned in the great truths which 
pertain to human progression and happiness. The following 
is from this spirit to a lady whose mind has been for consid- 
erable time agitated by conflicts between the impressions of 
her religious education and the dictates of her reason and 

" Cakoline: — Willing minds will find that every desire will 
be readily understood by spirits. Seek always to be so sensitive to 
spiritual influences as to see' truth ; and soon spirits will manifest 
themselves to you. Keep always wisdom before your mind; seek 
truth, so as to see its heavenly beauties, and you will be happy. 

Seek to know truth for truth's sake, so that every spiritual 
manifestation, seen and sanctified, will conduce to your progres- 
sion ; so that love will triumph over every other desire. 

Spirits are seeking' to have you keep spiritual harmony, and 
feel love to ALL mankind ; so that you always can appreciate 
truth and justice — and experience salvation from ALL superstition 
and bigotry, and slavery of ALL kinds ! 

Spirits are ever near you, dear friend, to protect you from all 
harm ! Love spiritual truths, and you will be free indeed ! 
Keep truth always before your mind, with wisdom to guide you, 
and you shall not want for any good thing /" 

Concerning voices from the spirit-land, timid minds are 
frequently heard to say, in substance — " Reason is carnal — 
the bible is silent upon spiritual intercourse, and it is mani- 
festly striving to be wise above what is written, to hearken 
unto and investigate these things." A mind of this class, Miss 

" God is a spirit ; and they that worship Mm must worship him in spirit and in 
Truth." — Primitive History. The human embodiment of Love and Justice, 
which form the Christ-Principle, is in the Primitive History very impressively 
called " the way, the Truth, and the life" — a principle which, when faithfully fol- 
lowed, is certain to lead the human mind tD the Deity — or, the great fountain 
of everlasting and infinite things. 


was one day impressed X> visit. The following is a 

communication whereby the "medium" received direction 
to visit a lady in Hartford, from a spirit (that lady's sister,) 
in the second sphere. It was received February 3d, 1851 ; 
and I tiiink the reader will be edified by appropriating it to 

U E , call at A 's to-day ; hut be cautious what you 

say to her. She is not prepared for all — she must know these 
things by degrees. Milk for babes, and meat for those who are 
able to digest it. There are many who think they are strong, but 

who are very iveak. E , do good to-day, as you are able. 

Think of the spirits — they are ever near you,- — fear not, nor be 

The sorrow-stricken, the unjustly afflicted, the troubled 
and disconsolate, should breathe in the following communica- 
tion addressed to the " medium," for Mrs. , from her 

grandfather, who has been some forty years in the spirit- 
land. It was imparted February 4th, 1851. 

" Tell dear C- i" am ever near her — that I have watched 

over her from infancy ; have protected her many times, though she 
knew it not. Tell her there are many truths she has yet to learn 
— beautiful truths, far surpassing human conception! They 
spring from a never failing fountain, and whoever will, may 
drink and thirst not. Happy indeed are they whom the Truth 
makes free ! Tell her to do good and be happy, and to let not the 
cares of earth prevent progression." 

To the " medium," from a beautifully intelligent spirit, for- 
merly a physician in H . 

" E , will you attend to a monitor who speaks to you in 

accents of Love ? Be ever ready to do good to all ; let your mind 
be ever awake to receive impressions, and spirits will speak to you 
in Love andWisdom. They are ever ready to instruct the willing 
mind, and to teach All how to be happy and progress. Every 
truthful mind loves truth ivherever it is found."* 

The reader is now supplied with accurate representations 
of those emanations of truth and affection which are ever 

* The commandments of Truth are high and imperious ; and her true disciples 
never hesitate to follow wheresoever she leads. Any theory, hypothesis, philoso- 
phy, sect, creed, or institution that fears investigation, openly manifests its own error. 


certain to proceed from the inhabitants of the second sphere 
of existence, whenever they find mediums that are good and 
truthful. Miss was one day reflecting upon the igno- 
rance and skepticism -among men, also concerning the final 
triumph of truth, and in a few minutes she received the fol- 
lowing communication from her aunt, who is one of her par- 
ticular guardian spirits : 

" E , you need not worry about the future — be quiet, be 

gentle, be truth-loving, and spirits will protect you. Love the 
Truth, and the Truth will make you free,— free from all error — 
free from shame — free from all oppression! Be not too anxious, 
for Truth is all-conquering in its influence ; it will conquer 
pride, and ambition, and all evil affections. 

0, how lovely is Love! 0, how truthful is Truth! J& , 

drink deep from the fountain of Truth!" 

It is a thing greatly to be desired that the harmonial circles 
develop truthful and impressible mediums. If those meet- 
ings are conducted* with a proper dignity, it is almost certain 
that phenomena, similar to the foregoing, will be the result. 
To this end, and also for mutual improvement and mental 
harmonization, should they congregate who unite to form 
circles according to the directions above specified. Let 
these re-unions be particularly sought by those who would 
learn of the fact of immortality. This is, I repeat, the great 
lesson the angels come now to teach. Let those who have 
hitherto looked upon death as a dark abyss — as the termina- 
tion of personal identification — come and behold the beautiful 
light which now illumines those, once to the human mind, 
impenetrable depths. Let them come who love life, and let 
them no more grieve when the years of earth fly past them ; 
let them no more be saddened when they are gone ; let them 
not cling to those years, as the drowning mariner grasps at a 
board, because they are life to us, and life is to be cherished. 
Let them not fear to loose that grasp lest, as the planks 
escape them, they sink into an ocean whose depths are un- 
known, the mysteries of whose unfathomable darkness are 
unrevealed, and where all their capabilities of loving and 
being happy, may, for aught they know, be everlastingly 
buried O, let them who ride upon this sea of terrors, let 


them come rvow and behold that the seemingly dark waters 
are but overshadowed by the clouds of ignorance, and those 
dispersed — the bright sun of heaven shines upon that ocean, 
revealing its depths, and the soul can look far, far into eter- 
nity, and behold that — there is no death ! The convinced 
soul no longer seeks to grasp the planks that float by. No ! 
Welcome, thrice welcome those depths — there is light there, 
and years, eternal years, are but the moments of Eternity. 
By this increasing light the human mind gazes deeper and 
deeper into the forever extending future — into the innumera- 
ble abysses of the universe, and sees every where the glowing 
gems of truth ; nor do the boundless riches which it contem- 
plates cause it to reject one, even the least, of those which it 
once gathered from off the surface of the darkened waters. 
Nay, for they too were jewels which rose from out of that 
ocean's depths, — and they are imperishable ! Nothing of all 
God's treasures can be lost ! Therefore, fear not tnat a sin- 
gle truth shall ever be cast away, or that aught which is the 
Father's can ever be destroyed. In the impressive language 
of David, the bible bard, I would say unto the reader — " from 
everlasting to everlasting thou art" a child of God. 


Under this head I will first proceed to consider how the 
spirits visit us. The question is, in what way do the de- 
parted come among us, even to stand in our midst at the 
circles? There are two methods by which they accomplish 
this. First, by their placing themselves into electrical rela- 
tions with the members of the circle from a distance ; 
second, by their actual entrance into the room where the 
circle is in session. But they come in at the open door. 
They can not pass through walls, or hard, solid substances 
any more than we can ; for they are organized as we are, 
and must necessarily submit to the principles of nature 
which govern matter and mind in all the vast realms of 
universal being. And here I am impressed to be clearly 


explicit, upon this point, in speaking to those who have 
erroneously entertained the supposition that spirits can go 
instantly any where and through any thing, "like thought," 
as they express it. This mistaken idea grows out of the 
wrong impression, which I have already alluded to, that spirit 
is immaterial. Neither is Thought the voyager it is imputed 
to be by those who do not metaphysically and deliberately 
examine, and study, as far as mind can investigate itself, the 
wonders and workings of their own interior principle. The 
discriminating metaphysician knows, that, because we can 
think of things, situated a world wide apart in a moment of 
time, it does not follow, as a consequence, that our thoughts 
travel over that intervening space. It is true, we can think 
of a vast number of localities separated by millions of miles, 
and can permit our thoughts, (so to speak,) to fly from one 
side of the universe to the other in the brief period of thirty 
seconds. But it is not proper here, to use the word^y in the 
sense which expresses the flight of the bird over space, or 
the traveling of the quick lightning which penetrates the 
intervening distances. The bird and the lightning fly, but 
we simply think concerning those localities, a knowledge of 
the existence of which has been, in some manner, impressed 
upon our memory. Our thoughts, therefore, only traverse, 
in fact, the various store-houses of our memory, contemplating 
the various possessions there, and passing rapidly from one 
point to another in that demesne. They go not thence into 
the outer world to traverse space, but are confined to the 
interior departments of the mind, where are distinctly written 
or daguerreotyped the different localities and the particulai 
events which we have experienced, read in books, or heard 
tell of with interest. Now it is upon the false supposition 
that Thought travels from place to place, and through all 
intervening substances, that the mind, reasoning thence 
analogically, comes to the untenable conclusion that Spirits 
travel upon identical principles. But since the basis of this 
analogy is erroneous, the conclusions derived therefrom 
must be erroneous also; hence we should seek other methods 
of ascertaining the truth on this very important and highly 
metaphysical subject. 


We should turn to the principles of nature for instruction ; 
they teach us that a spirit can not pass through walls, be- 
cause it is, itself, an organization of substantial elements. 
Many individuals think that a spirit, (supposing it to be but 
a disembodied essence,) can penetrate and pass through hard 
substances, as the sun sends down to earth its rays of light 
through windows into a room, or as atmospheric electri- 
city darts from mount to mount through space. But these 
processes will not subserve the purpose of a basis upon which 
to analogically infer that so it is with spirit. The case is 
widely different. Spirit is not a mere element, like light or 
electricity; but it is a combination of elements and principles, 
beautifully and organically constructed. If a spirit should 
be forced through a wall, the consequence in such a case, 
(which case I am impressed could never occur,) would be a 
disorganization of the elements which compose that spirit, 
but these elements would immediately re-organize, just as a 
body of water separates in passing through a net, but unites 
again on the opposite side. Where the interstices in a solid 
substance are not sufficiently large to admit the refined and 
elastic organism of the spirit, there it can not pass without 
experiencing the physical consequences of disorganization. 
Hence those laws which govern man's physical being and 
movements in this sphere of existence, are equally applicable 
to the organism and movements of spirits in spheres superior. 
It is not an easy thing for the human mind to comprehend the 
spiritual organization ; but there are very numerous external 
and sensuous evidences of its substantiality and materiality. 
As one illustration of this proposition, I refer the reader to 
the following extract from the Medical Journal, which says : 
" It has been observed, that persons who have lost a limb, or 
a part of one, are at times very much troubled with an intol- 
erable itching, or sometimes pain, in the fingers or toes 
of the extremity which is lost. A case of this kind lately 
presented itself to us for adv'.ce, which, being a little out of 
the common course, we have thought proper to give to our 
readers. A young man had his hand amputated just above 
the wrist, on account of having it shattered by the bursting 
of a gun, This happened some two years since, and the 


deficiency is supplied by a wooden hand. At times, he tells us 
that he has the most intolerable itching between these wooden 
fingers, in fact insupportable, and, to use his own words, he 
would give a hundred dollars for the chance to give them a 
scratching. At other times, he has much pain where the 
fingers should be, and he can only obtain relief by altering 
their position. When free from the pain or itching, he can 
discover no difference between that hand and the sound one. 
He can will the fingers of the lost hand to act, and they seem 
to obey. At times, the ends of the fingers are quite numb 
and cold ; being partly flexed, he feels that he has not the 
power to extend them. There are other phenomena con- 
nected with this case, which, with those we have given, 
would be very difficult to account for on physiological prin- 
ciples." Here it is seen that the elements of the spiritual 
organism are not destroyed by accidents, but continue in 
their proper places and conditions. In the foregoing case, 
the individual feels the elements of his spiritual hand permea- 
ting the wooden fingers, and quite as distinctly too as when 
those elements were clothed with the natural hand. It is 
well to remember that the spiritual form does not organize 
until all the elements have emanated from the natural body. 
These invisible principles can not be destroyed by accidents 
or otherwise, because they are essentially living, and are dis- 
tinctly visible to the spiritual senses — to the eyes of the 
immortal mind ; but they do not, as before said, take upon 
themselves their indestructible body — do not organize into 
the spiritual form — until they all escape the confines of the 
earthly temple. 

The inquirer now naturally asks, " If spirits can not (at 
will) pass through vails, rocks, and other solid substances, 
how can one extricate itself from the depths of an avalanche 
where it has been buried, — how shall it escape from that 
mountain of earth and stones?" To this question I am im- 
pressed to answer, that when a human being is overwhelmed 
by such a catastrophe — is thus fearfully buried, thus crushed 
to death, as it is termed — the spirit escapes the body and the 
mass of materials by passing, in the form of elements, accord- 
ing to the law of gravitation, to a position above the earth, 


where the re-organization of those elements can, without 
obstruction, easily take place. This organism is the final 
formation, the spiritual body which is incorruptible. The 
spirit, considered as a structure, could not pass from its posi- 
tion under the earth to a superior position above the earth ; 
hut, whilst a suspension of consciousness accompanies the 
process and phenomena of a dissolution of the ties existing 
between the soul and the body, the elements of the former, 
(the soul,) ascend through the mass of earth and rock, and 
ultimate themselves in the spiritual and final organization, 
which is both indestructible and eternally progressive. In 
order to furnish an illustration of the principle upon which 
the human spirit makes its escape from beneath the avalanche 
or from any similar obstacle, and thus accomplishes its own 
emancipation, I will here relate an interesting instance which 
occurred a few years since. 

One morrring, as I was walking through a suburban portion 
of the beautiful village of Poughkeepsie, I observed a number 
of men at a little distance engaged, as I supposed, in digging 
a well. A field separated me from them, and I halted, un- 
conscious of any particular motive for so doing, and leaning 
against the fence, watched the men as they worked the 
windlass in raising water and mud from the excavation, 
which was already A>ery deep. Immediately, I noticed that 
the workmen were suddenly thrown into great commotion 
as by some unexpected accident. On seeing their rapid and 
anxious movements, I hurried across the field, and ascertained 
the cause of their distress. A poor Irish laborer was buried 
beneath the stones and clay, which had that moment caved 
into the well ! This intelligence intensified my sympathies 
to a high degree. The condition of the unfortunate man 
was, to the natural senses, too horrible to contemplate ; and 
this excitement, combined with the desire to ascertain the 
sufferer's position, constituted a powerful magnetizer to 
whose influence I readily yielded, and passed directly into 
the superior condition. And, as solid substances can not 
retard the penetration of the spiritual perceptions, (see " Great 
Harmonia," vol. 1, p. 381,) I directed them upon the man in 
the well. He was beyond all pain and distress. The heavy 



load of material had crushed his natural body, and he was 
dead ! This event took place several months previous to 
my general investigations into the principles of Nature ; and 
hence this question, at that time, arose in my mind — " how 
can the human spirit escape from such a condition ?" 
With novel sensations I watched the process before me. 
First, I observed, with regard to the buried man, an entire 
suspension of his consciousness — a fusion, so to speak, of all the 
elements and ethereal constituents of his spiritual constitution 
— like many substances melted into one bright fluid, having 
neither form or harmony. The brain of the dead man was 
surcharged with this brilliant liquid, which seemed also par- 
tially to permeate the lower extremities. Immediately, how- 
ever, this glowing, luminous, most refined kind of fluidity 
began ascending, from the brain, through the solid substances 
above it, still passing upward between the workmen, (who 
were laboring to extricate their companion,) into the atmos- 
phere some six feet above the heads of the men. Here the 
spiritual elements ceased to ascend. And I now directed 
my observations to this point, where a space of about three 
feet in diameter became rapidly more and more brilliant. 
And this spot of dazzling light seemed to pulsate with an 
indwelling animation. It appeared like a great heart, com- 
posed of thinking elements. A soft, mellow halo continued 
to accumulate around it, still emanating from the body in the 
well ; and thus this seeming heart was provided with a kind 
of ethereal pericardium, or covering, which was very beauti- 
ful and physiological. Now this sublime process was going 
on while the workmen were putting forth every possible 
exertion to rescue their fellow-laborer from his awful posi- 
tion. They were not aware of the (to them) invisible 
operations of those very elements of animation and intelli- 
gence, which only forty minutes before had made the now 
buried man a thinking, working being in their midst. That 
same essence was now ascending between them and above 
them, and they knew it not. But I saw it all ! Had they 
rescued that being, ere it had escaped the natural body, how 
different would have been its resurrection ! They could not 
behold this glorious ascension. But while they lovingly and 


anxiously continued their exertions to save him, ] still 
watched with calm delight that palpitating, living combina- 
tion of elements in the air ; and very soon I discovered, in 
the center of the pulsating mass, so redolent with life, as it 
was, the distinct outlines of a symmetrically constructed 
head. A beautiful progression was visible throughout the 
whole phenomenon. Particle sought particle, atom sought 
atom, element sought element, principle sought principle,* in 
accordance with the principles of Association, progression 
and development ; and the whole process of organization 
went on with that silent order and undeviating precision 
which characterize the growth of trees and the development 
of flowers ! In due order of progression I saw developed, 
(as I have already described in another instance, see " Great 
Harmonia," vol. 1, p. 170,) the perfect development of the 
head, body, limbs, &c, of the new and indestructible organi- 
zation into which the spiritual elements of that laborer 
ultimated themselves ; and I beheld a form finely wrought — 
a body beautifully, organically and symmetrically constructed 
— adapted to that glorious land where divine love and wis- 
dom environ the. soul forever. 

The whole process of this interesting phenomenon occu- 
pied about three hours. At the end of that time the spirit 
was completely liberated from "the " dominion of the flesh," 
by a sudden separation of that thread of vital electricity 

* Let those to whom this beautiful process appears incredible, because they 
can not, with the natural eyes, behold it, — let them consider how the natural 
body is formed — how, in the mother's womb, atom seeks atom, particle seeks 
particle, and principle seeks principle, associating themselves by the laws of 
assimilation and development, md forming the spirit's first habitation, the infant 
temple of the soul ; and then consider how, in like manner, the finer elements of 
a more glorious body, the etherealized materials of a holier temple, may assemble 
themselves together and unite in a purer and more beautiful form. 

The grosser particles of the natural body are months in uniting, while the 
refined atoms of the spiritual body organize in as many hours, or in even a less 
time. But not more wonderful is the birth of the heavenly body, than is the 
birth of the earthly body — though so infinitely more sublime is that of the spiritual 
than that of the natural — I would that all might once behold this second birth, so 
that all might live in joyful anticipation of the change. I would have no mind 
fear death, but rather unrighteousness : for no one is exempt from the painful 
consequences of wr<ng actions which violate the operations of Nature";- Laws. 


which I have elsewhere compared to the umbilical cord of 
the natural birth, which gradually more attenuated thread of 
glittering light, reaching from the body in the depths of the 
well, until that moment connected the material and the 
ultimate organisms together. This thread parted, and the 
spirit was born ! His consciousness was now restored — but 
what an emancipation ! The toiling slave was free ! The 
world-neglected, the down-trodden workman — the poor, 
despised, but honest Irishman — now, from where he stood, s 
a glorified form, looked down and beheld his former com- 
panions still laboring to rescue what, by this time, they felt 
could be only a dead body. His spiritual perceptions, gazing 
still deeper, readily pierced to where lay the crushed remains. 
But the torn and bleeding body, and the tattered poor man's 
clothes, were alike objects of interest to him ; he had put off 
both, never again to resume them ! He could speak no fare- 
well word to his friends through their dull sense of material 
hearing, and he readily perceived and comprehended that he 
was invisible to their gross natural sight ; so, turning from 
them with a passive and calm joy, he submitted himself to 
the attractions which were sent down to him from the second 

sphere, and passed on, away from the earth !* 


* Necrologically considered, the ascension or resurrection of man's immortal 
soul from the earth, into the immeasurable second sphere of spiritual existence — a 
sphere which is a vast degree superior to the present life in refinement, in beauty, 
in harmony, and perfection — is a natural, beautiful, and wonderful phenomenon. 
Inasmuch as the human spiritual organization is naturally and inevitably immortal, 
and inasmuch as it is a combination, like the corporeal or present body, of sub- 
stantial elements and principles, it is therefore very philosophical and logically 
legitimate to conclude that the spirit of man must be acted upon, to a certain 
extent, by the laws which control solids and fluids — by the principles of Nature. 
The law of gravitation or association has a slight yet perceptible action upon the as- 
cending spirit, just as steam is, by this law, made or compelled to gravitate above 
the earth into the atmosphere. James Victor Wilson designed to be understood 
thus when he said, in describing his passage from earth, " We passed from the 
earth-sphere through the opening at one of the poles." Owing to the centrifugal 
movement or tendency of our earth, which imparts to both water and atmosphere 
an impetus to fly from the center to the extreme periphery of the orbit in which 
it (the earth) revolves, the height and density of the air must necessarily be 
greater in the direction of its diurnal and annual revolutions than at the poles, 
In other words, the atmosphere, for the above obvious reasons, is very much 
more rare, penetrable, or pervious to light bodies, at the sides or poles of the 


The exceeding beauty of this transfiguration evidenced the 
soul of a good man — one, in whom the moral virtues had 
grown almost up to the stature of a pure spirit. Truth, Jus- 
tice, Love, Purity of heart and action, such, are the imperish- 
able adornments of the immortal being. But in this life, these 
rich possessions are too often shrouded by poverty ; the world 
sees them not beneath the torn garb of the laborer, whom 
circumstances chain, as it w r ere, to the oar, — his existence 
being one continual pull against the tide of adversity. In 
the present structure of society, no time is given him for out- 
ward display wherewith to dazzle the world, nor for the proper 
rest of his body and cultivation of his mind ; but there is an 
inward accumulation of patience, of gentleness, of love, which, 
though silent and hidden, is ever brightening more and more 
for future glory ! I beheld this transformation, and I was 
happy. On this impressive occasion, I learned that, should 
the material body be dissolved with disease, or crushed by 
any catastrophe or accident whatever, the individuality of 
the spirit is not deformed, nor in the least degree obscured. 
Because the various elements which compose the spiritual 
organization, can easily and readily penetrate and ascend 
through all, even adamantine, substances to a position above 
every conceivable material obstruction, where, unmolested 
and unimpeded, the soul naturally and spontaneously takes 
upon itself its final and incorruptible form, — a form, at first, 
more or less beautiful, brighter or darker, according to the 
individual's development and growth in goodness previous 
to his departure from the earth. And though the form then 
assumed is indestructible, and shall change no more forever, 
it' may nevertheless, and will, become brighter, lovelier, more 
glorious, more inconceivably sublime, in proportion to its ad- 
vancement in love, its progression in wisdom, its ascension 
from sphere to sphere ! 

earth, than it is in the direction of its motions. And spirits frequently, though 
not invariably, glide into the great current of magnetism tending southward, (see 
" Great Harmonia," p. 92,) and are conducted,, with inexpressible ease and 
pleasure, upon its flowing surface through the " opening," or thin, penetrable 
atmosphere, at " one of the poles." This is in accordance with the principles of 
physical gravitation. 


Continuing to contemplate the subject of & spirit's escape 
from the natural body, I will now proceed to answer a query 
frequently addressed me. " Suppose," says the inquirer, " a 
living man should be put into an air-tight box, which shall be 
hermetically sealed, and that box be placed within a glass 
case as tightly closed. How, under these circumstances, 
could the spirit of that man escape ?" Before replying to this 
question, I am impressed to conduct the reader's thoughts to 
the observation of a class of interesting effects and phenom- 
ena in external nature. It is a familiar fact that a magnet 
will influence the mariner's compass through any substance 
whatever. Let the compass be placed in a glass case her- 
metically sealed, or in any confined box into which neither 
air or light can enter, and yet the magnet will, when moved 
on the external of the case, turn the needle in any direction. 
This natural fact seems like enchantment, for we can see the 
effect but not the cause. It is also well known to miners 
that, in the region of a rich iron mine, the magnetic needle 
will attract, through the most confined glass case, a great many 
atoms of iron^-resembling, (color excepted,) the fine frost 
which coats the tendrils of plants in winter. In these facts 
we have a foundation upon which to rest a beautiful analogy. 
It is magnetism and electricity which pass from the magnet 
through the intervening substances, and produce the effects, 
upon the needle, which we behold. And so the elements of 
the spirit, — which are far more attenuated and refined than 
electricity or magnetism, — can readily pass through and above 
any hermetically sealed box, and ultimate themselves into a 
firm and unchangeable organization — the spiritual body — and 
thus leave the earthly form destitute of life and animation. 
Nay, you can not confine the spirit of man ! It will rise tri- 
umphantly superior to all earthly barriers and imperfections, 
and will manifest its powers of vigor, of expansion and sub- 
limity, throughout all spheres. Let death come to the slave, 
and he bursts his chains ! It releases the prisoner ; it sets 
free the condemned,- -for the soul knows no destroyer ! 

The question — " how can the spirit of a man escape its 
earthly confinement ?" — is one of much weight to the student 
of Nature. But to the mind of him who has never examined 


into the foundation of his faith, concerning the nature of spirit 
and the principles of immortality, this query may seem irre- 
ligious and unnecessary. Such a person has set bounds to 
I lis knowledge. Therefore, I speak now in reply to the bold 
investigator, — to the manly seeker after wisdom — to the im- 
mortal soul whose deep searchings would penetrate the mys- 
teries of godliness — to the end that his spirit may draw nigher 
unto the Father, and drink in the inspirations of his unutter- 
able greatness. 

I have been frequently questioned as to the supposed dead 
being buried alive, and have been asked, " in what way the 
spirit in a vault escaping from its natural body and organizing 
therein, would pass out of that dark prison-house ?" And 
again, — " how, if put under ground, the spirit would escape 
the precincts of the grave ?" To this last inquiry I have re- 
plied in describing the emancipation of the man from the well. 
Generally speaking, the spiritual elements escape alike the 
grave and the vaulted tomb, or the dungeon, (when one dies 
imprisoned,) 'previous to organizing. But should the living 
particles unite and form within the earthly body's burial place, 
it is because there are means of escape at hand. I will relate 
an incident in illustration of this fact : 

By the guiding influence and promptings of some guardian 
spirit, I was once impressed to visit a particular cemetery in 
the State of New York, and to watch there one of Nature's 
interesting processes. That I w T as then, and often, thus fa- 
vored, I have learned, was not for my own individual benefit 
alone ; but it was, also, for the future happiness of the many, 
that my impressible and susceptible state was taken advan- 
tage of, as it were, by messengers from higher spheres, where- 
by to teach me, and others who sought to know of these things, 
and whose present material organisms did not admit of their 
immediately receiving a more direct instruction. From this 
digression I proceed to represent the lesson which, so to ex- 
press myself, I joyfully learned from the " mouth of the sep- 
ulchre," which never speaks to me of gloom ; for the ceme- 
tery is to me one of earth's brightest places, and every grave 
is a vestibule to the spirit-land. Not knowing why, at that 
time, I was particularly attracted to this my favorite resort 


and place of meditation, I resolved to continue in mind per- 
fectly passive ; and allowed myself to be conducted, by the 
unseen but controlling influence, to the vicinity of a large 
vault, in which the supposed dead body of a young man had 
been deposited only the day before. 

It was a beautiful September afternoon, and, I think, about 
four o'clock in the day. A sacred stillness and serene tran- 
quillity pervaded this hallowed spot of heavenly portals, and 
every thing seemingly conspired to add external charms to 
the spiritual scene which I was led there to contemplate. Im- 
mediately on my arrival 'at the tomb, I experienced the sweet, 
familiar, and benign magnetic influence of my guardian 
spirit,* steal over my nervous system; and, in a few seconds, I 
passed thoroughly into the Superior Condition. My spiritual 
senses being now opened and directed within the vault, I per- 
ceived there the living spirit among the dead bodies. It was 
not a mere corpse which had been the day before conveyed 
to the tomb ; but it was a body from which the spirit had not 
yet departed. The spirit had, subsequently to the interment 
of the body, escaped the material temple by penetrating the 
boards which confined it ; but the spirit had organized within 
the somewhat spacious vault. Yes ; there, within that tomb, 
beside the coffin wherein lay the grosser form he had worn 
only twenty-four hours previous, — there, I beheld the libera- 
ted spirit, calmly standing in all the majesty of immortal beau- 
ty. I was made to perceive that he was but just, prepared to 
quit the earth-sphere ; and it was that I might witness this 
interesting departure that my guiding spirit had brought me 
thither. I was now to be shown the illustration of a princi- 
ple which runs deep in pneumatological science. 

It was very natural, under the circumstances, for my mind 
to spontaneously inquire — " How now will that glorious being 
escape from his material confinement ?" This question was 
involuntary, because I had previously learned that the spiritual 
form could not pass through solid walls and iron doors ; and, 
therefore, the fact that the spirit before me was indestructibly 

* See a small work by the author, entitled, "Th? Philosophy of Special Provi- 
dence," p. 19, et see. 


organized within the tomb was, I concluded, a sufficient in- 
ferential evidence that some other method of escape would be 
soon adopted. He stood, for a few moments, upright and 
unmoved by any disquietude. Presently the newly awakened 
intellect began to examine surrounding conditions, and to re- 
alize its new existence. There was nothing of death in this 
scene ; it was all life and intelligence ! As soon as the spirit 
realized the "new birth" which he had but just experienced, 
and when he ascertained something of the higher sympathies 
and attractive destinies which were waiting for him in the 
spirit-land, then he calmly and affectionately exercised his 
penetrative vision upon the earthly scenes and friends he had 
so recently left. No walls could obstruct the passage of his 
vision ; and I, being at the time in a similar condition, (for 
the "spiritual state" is a partial emancipation from the body.) 
could follow his perceptions, and, at the same time, could 
maintain a conscious sympathy with the thoughts and emo- 
tions of his mind. He had been, in this life, a clergyman of 
the Baptist denomination. I followed his sympathies to the 
homes of those he loved ; and it gave me great joy to behold 
that, although he left many ardent friends and sweet associ- 
ations on the earth, there was nothing to sadden his departure 
hence. There were loftier attractions descending into the 
deepest recesses of his nature from on high. He was drawn 
toward the spirit-land as the magnet attracts the needle, — a 
principle of spiritual gravitation actuated his newly awakened 
being, — and he soon realized that his true position was only to 
be found in the tranquil realms of a greater and a higher 
world. But he, as a personality, was still within the tomb ! 

Withdrawing now his perceptions from the habitations 
of his earthly friends, and obeying an impression received 
from a guardian spirit near the cemetery, he at once placed 
his vision upon the sexton who was the individual last at the 
tomb on the previous day. The object of this I did not 
comprehend, until I, also, saw that the sexton was exceed- 
ingly anxious *z C'.l an implement (it was a shovel, I be- 
lieve,) which he had mislaid and very much required that, 
afternoon. It seemed he had already spent much time in 
looking for the missing article ; but, jus?, as he was about to 

138 TRUTH an; mystery. 

give up further search at that tJme, the spirit, m the tomb, 
sent an impression which darted like the lightning through all 
intervening substances, and, with a soft breathing like the 
evening zephyr, it passed over the sexton's moral faculties 
and quickened his memory. And I distinctly saw his thought, 
it read — " Why, I really believe that I left my shovel in the 

Rev. Mr. 's vault, which I fastened up last evening — Til 

go and see this minute." In pursuance of this impression, he 
proceeded immediately to the place, opened the vault, and, as 
he entered it, the lovely and h rrh destined spirit glided forth, 
through the unclosed door, into the soft, still atmosphere 
which then pervaded the cemetery. He was now free from 
all material barriers ; his thoughts and desires yielded an 
angelic passiveness and spontaneous obedience to the supe- 
rior attractions which emanated from celestial realms ; and 
his spirit, — that indestructible organization of perfected ele- 
ments which, thus united, rendered him a harmonious and 
immortal being, — passed away to that magnificent sphere 
which lies embosomed in the depths of immensity ! 

O, what an instructive and divinely impressive scene ! 
And that message — so beautifully conveyed, so softly winged 
into the sexton's mind, not a thought ruffled thereby — how 
perfectly it illustrated to my understanding the power of one 
mind to act upon and influence another mind ! How sweetly 
it revealed to me the truth that the freed spirit can approach 
earth's weary traveler — can find out the grief-stricken and 
exhausted pilgrim in this rudimental state of human existence, 
and drop a thought in his heart, which will revive and refresh 
his fainting soul ; or else semi down, even from some high 
heaven, an impression so divine, lovely, and energizing, as te 
illumine his future with a grand and undying joy ! 

The sexton doubtless believed that the thought of visiting 
the vault, in order to find his shovel, originated in his own 
mind ; but I saw that thought deposited, or rather evolved, by 
the magnetic influence which was sent into his memory by 
the spirit. This is an impressive exerxV^f: ration of the prin- 
ciples of psychological science, with which science mam 
minds are already acquainted. 

As soon as the liberated spVit had, together with his con 


genial companions, the beautiful immortals, (four in number, 
who were calmly waiting for him over the vault,) glided far, 
far away toward the second sphere, I inquired, of my invis- 
ible guide and magnetizer — " How could that spirit have 
escaped from its confinement, if the sexton had not been thus 
susceptible to impression, or in case he had not left his shovel 
at the tomb ?" To this question he replied : " that, then, 
some one of the many relatives of the deceased could and 
would have been magnetically influenced to come to the 
vault that afternoon, with the intention to visit the dead, when 
the door would have been thus opened for the egress and 
final emancipation of the spirit/' My guide further instructed 
me, in substance, as follows : "in case neither sexton or rela- 
tives could have been thus magnetically influenced to open 
the vault, then the four guardian angels, attending his (the 
young man's) spiritual emergment, would have foreseen the 
circumstances, and so acted upon the external atmosphere 
above the tomb as to have caused the spirit to organize itself 
in space. 

The spiritual influence which pervaded my nervous 
system, — and which had conducted me into the superior 
condition, in which the spiritual senses are opened, — was 
now naturally withdrawn, and, in a few moments, I was 
again in the outer world, restored to my ordinary state. 
The impression of what I had seen was indelibly impressed 
upon my mind — to be afterward recalled with all its original 
vividness ; and my understanding of magnetic and psycho- 
logical principles was much educated and enlarged by observ- 
ation of the phenomena which attended the departure of that 
spirit from earth. 

By the above related circumstance, the questions concern- 
ing the passage of the spirit-form through hard substances, 
are satisfactorily answered ; the conclusions being : 

First, that when individuals are buried in the ground, alive, 
then the elements, which compose the spiritual organism do, 
after death in the grave, emanate through the intermedi- 
ate or intervening substances, and organize the incorruptible, 
the unchangeable, thi immortal body in the external atmos- 


Second, that when a person dies within a room,* within a 
dungeon, or a vault, and ivhen the spiritual organization is con- 
structed and elaborated therein, then the neiv-born being him- 
self, or it may be the guardian- angel of that newly awakened 
spirit, (who is in attendance to guide him to his home above,) 
will influence some highly impressible and very accessible indi- 
vidual, in the natural body, to open the door ; thus rendering 
that person unconsciously instrumental in assisting the spirit to 

I would particularly call the attention of my readers to the 
fact that persons are often buried alive ; the dead are apt to 
be too soon hurried jout of sight; the apparently deserted 
temple should be watched with care; for the living spirit 
may but have absented itself for a time. If the umbilical 
cord~\ of vital electricity be not severed, the soul may yet 
return to the natural body ; because, in such an instance, all 
the living elements have not yet emanated therefrom, and the 
seeming dead are but in a state of catalepsy, which state may 
continue for many days. Such a transitional or transic con 
dition may be considered as a threatened premature birth ; 
but the spirit is only truly born out of the natural body into the 
spiritual body, when all the elements of the living principle 
are released. Then the soul no more returns to its earthly 
tenement ; but completes its final emancipation from the cor- 
poreal organism, by a powerful exercise of the will-power, 
which energetic act of volition severs the cord, and the liber- 
ated spirit glides away. It sometimes occurs that this power- 
ful effort on the part of the spirit, to achieve its freedom from 
the corruptions of the flesh, — this latest struggle into the new 
birth, — is manifested in the material body, which is, by those 
strong efforts, made to move and to indicate apparently pain- 
ful muscular action, even after it has been supposed that the 
last motion was over. 

In continued pursuance of the investigation as to how 
spirits, passed into the higher life, revisit us here ; and in 
further illustration of the method whereby they enter rooms, 
also to elucidate the fact that hargnonial circles are, and will 

* The above explains the passage found in " Great Harmonia f) Vol. I. p. 172. 
■*See "Harmonia," Vol. 1, p. 196, 


be, attended by delegates from the nigher spheres ; I will here 
introduce another instance from my memorabilia. 

Some three years since, as I was about recovering from a 
severe illness, an impression came to me, clothed with all the 
positiveness which naturally emanates from the sphere of a 
mind conscious of the possession of knowledge and truth, that 
I must write upon the great problem of social evil, its cure, 
and how industry may be made attractive and remunerative 
to the toiling millions which people this globe. It was, how- 
ever, a question yet unsettled, whether my communication 
should be more particularly addressed to the people them- 
selves, or to the shepherds of the people, the clergy. Had 
this matter been determined by the impression, which I re- 
ceived that I should write upon the subject, I should have had 
no after query about it ; but, as it was not thus decided for 
me, I could not resist the spontaneous and involuntary effort 
of my mind to decide the question for itself; and this thougbi 
was the burden of my deliberations, when I was made sweetly 
conscious of the princely presence of the lofty spirit of Solon, 
the Athenian Lawgiver, in my room. He was accompanied 
thither by the, also, highly exalted spirit of Pisistrates, his 
present friend and associate in the better life, though once, in 
this world, his strongest enemy. 

In a few minutes I passed into that state of perfect ab- 
straction, the superior condition, which separates my spirit 
from the influence of the physical body and world, and was 
soon in direct communication with the mind of Solon, the 
more progressed and enlightened of the two. My room was 
situated in the third story of the house ; and, it being winter, 
the doors and windows were closed. It is naturally ques- 
tioned, by those who now understand that spirits can not 
pass through walls, — " how, on that occasion, did Solon and 
Pisistrates penetrate to my apartment ?" I will explain, as it 
was afterward shown to me by them. 

The two spirits arrived at the entrance of the dwelling at 
the precise moment when a gentleman was passing in. .out, 
as the gentleman closed the door rather too quickly behind 
him to admit their passage, one of them impressed him to re- 
open it. and wait the approach of his little daughter who was 


.hen engaged at play in the fi Dnt yard. This he did immedi- 
ately ; but supposed, like the sexton above mentioned, that the 
impulse to do so originated within his own mind. As he ad- 
vanced from the doorway, a few steps, to meet his child, the 
spirits glided past him into the hall, and thence without 
further obstruction up the two flights of stairs to the threshold 
of my apartment, the door of which was quite closed. They 
would, doubtless, have impressed me to open it for them, had 
I sufficiently recovered from my illness to have readily left 
my couch. 

There was, however, in the house a young girl whose busi- 
ness it was to convey things to and from my room, and at- 
tend to my wants ; she was immediately mentally and mag- 
netically impressed, by the positive and powerful will-power 
possessed by Solon, to leave the kitchen and come up to my 
room, to inquire if I was in need of any thing. This injunc- 
non she forthwith obeyed, on the supposition that she was 
discharging the duty assigned her of attending to my wants. 
When she opened the door of my room, the spirits entered, 
and did not make me aware of their presence until the girl 
went out and descended the stairs. Now every thing was 
still and tranquil, and a quiet holiness reigned there ; my 
mind drank in the beautiful instructions of Solon, and my 
spirit bowed to the wisdom of this high messenger. His, 
then, impartations of thought do not enlighten the present 
investigation ; I do not, therefore, give them in this publica- 
tion. I have related what occurred at that time, thus far, to 
illustrate the method which spirits frequently adopt when- 
ever they desire to be present, in propria persona, at the 
circles which form to receive spiritual communications 
through the medium of vibrations, or through illumination, at 
the bedside of the weary, the diseased, and the dying. 

My own interior experience is rife with instances of special 
providence or interposition on the part of guardian spirits. 
They frequently approach me to impart that which instantly 
changes the train of thought in mv mind, introducing new 
and unexpected ideas ; and I not unfrequently have received, 
from these guardians, impressions which, when implicitly 
obeyed, have saved me from pain, illness, and accident. In- 


deed, twenty-four hours seldom go by without furnishing me 
with some beautiful illustration and philosophical exempli- 
fication of the magnetic power and the close guardianship of 
spirits. Nor are these interior happy experiences enjoyed 
by me alone ; for there are numerous instances on record, 
showing the providentia. interposition of ministering angels, 
and declaring to us how frequently they hove produced im- 
pressions by influx of thought, whereby many persons have 
been saved from terrible accidents and disastrous misfortune. 
These impressions are sometimes termed presentiments, of 
which, misnamed spiritual interpositions, I am moved to 
introduce a few illustrations from the pen of an author who 
probably never designed them to elucidate and confirm our 
philosophy- of spiritual intercourse. 

First instance. — " I have heard of several cases of people 
hurrying home from a presentiment of fire ; and Mr. M. Cal- 
derhood was once, when absent from home, seized with such 
an anxiety about his family, that, without being able in any 
way to account for it, he felt himself impelled to fly to them 
and remove them from the house they were inhabiting ; one 
wing of which fell down immediately afterward. No notion 
of such a misfortune had ever before occurred to him, nor 
was there any reason whatever to expect, it ; the accident 
originating from some defect in the foundation." 

Second instance. — " A circumstance exactly similar to this, 
is related by Stilling, of Professor Bohm, teacher of Mathe- 
matics, at Marburg; who, being one evening in company, 
was suddenly seized with a conviction that he ought to go 
home. As, however, he was very comfortably taking tea, 
and had nothing to do at home, he resisted the admonition ; 
but it returned wiih such force that at length he was obliged 
to yield. On reaching his house, he found every thing as he 
had left it ; but he now felt himself urged to remove his bed 
from the corner in which it stood to another ; but, as it had 
always stood there, he resisted this impulsion also. How- 
ever, the resistance was vain ; absurd as it seemed, he felt he 
must do it ; so he summoned the maid, and, with her aid 
drew the bed to the other side of the room ; after which he 
felt quite at ease, and returned to spend the rest of the even- 


ing with his friends. At ~n o'clock the party broke up 
and he retired home, and went to bed and to sleep. In the 
middle of the night he was wakened by a loud crash, and on 
looking out he saw that a large beam had fallen, bringing part 
of the ceiling with it, and was lying exactly on the spot his 
bed had occupied." 

Third instance. — " One of the most remarkable cases of 
presentiment I know, is that which occurred not very long 
since on board one of her Majesty's ships, when lying off 
Portsmouth. The officers being one day at the mess table, a 
young Lieutenant P. suddenly laid down his knife and fork, 
pushed away his plate, and turned extremely pale. He then 
rose from the table, covering his face with his hands, and re- 
tired from the room. The president of the mess, supposing 
him to be ill, sent one of the young men to inquire what was 
the matter. At first Mr. P. was unwilling to speak ; but on 
being pressed, he confessed that he had been seized with a 
sudden and irresistible impression that a brother he had then 
in India was dead. 'He died,' said he, 'on the 12th of 
August, at six o'clock : I am perfectly certain of it.' No ar- 
guments could overthrow this conviction, which, in due 
course of post, was verified to the letter. The young man 
had died at Cawnpore, at the precise period mentioned." 

Here, also, I am impressed to quote another similar fact 
related as occurring in our own country ; thousands such 
could be collected ; but I select this as a 

Fourth instance. — "Joseph Wilbur, a celebrated Quaker 
preacher, who lived at Trenton, Washington county, New 
York, ran to his barn in a great hurry, one, day, about ten 
years since, to saddle his horse, saying that ' Thomas Searl, 
our neighbor, is now fixing up a rope behind his barn to hang 
himself. I see the whole thing before me distinctly. Let me 
hurry, or I shall be too late.' Thus he dashed down the road 
to have an interview with his neighbor Searl, and just arrived 
as the unhappy man was about to jump from a crotch of the 
tree, with a noose about his neck. Joseph talked to the man, 
and saved him from certain death." 

The phenomena of spiritual clairvoyance or mental illu- 
mination have also been more or less familiar to well organ- 


ized and impressible minds in all ages of the world. The 
high enlightenment and prophetic power possessed by most 
of the Bible authors ; and the serene, discriminating penetra- 
tion of some philosophical intellects, into the profound mys- 
teries of science and moral truth ; are alone referable' to that 
development and expansion of the internal senses, and to that 
quickening of the interior and intuitive faculties of the human 
soul, which constitutes the true superior condition. As inde- 
pendent testimony of the essential verity of these remarks, 1 
quote -an English authoress, Mrs. Crowe, who has very care- 
fully detailed many interesting instances of unequivocal clair- 
voyance. The dissimilar spiritual appearances presented to 
different persons, while they are experiencing the various 
degrees of enjoyment and comprehension which result from 
spiritual perception, are owing to the different degrees of 
the advancement of their minds ; also to the state or degree 
of the freedom of their spirits from their bodies, by which 
they are sometimes, by a very partial emancipation, only in a 
transitional state ; when the same thing presents a different 
appearance from what it does to one more liberated and fully 
in the superior condition. This is beautifully illustrated ' in 
the following : 

First instance. — " The late Mr. John Holloway, of the 
bank of England, brother to the engraver of that name, 
related of himself that being one night in bed with his wife 
and unable to sleep, he had fixed his eyes and thoughts 
with uncommon intensity on a beautiful star that was 
shining in at the window, when he suddenly found his 
spirit released from his body and soaring into that bright 
sphere. But, instantly seized with anxiety for the anguish 
of his wife, if she discovered his body apparently dead beside 
her, he returned, and re-entered it with difficulty (hence, per- 
haps, the violent convulsions with which some somnambules 
of the highest order are awakened.) He described that re- 
turning, was returning to darkness ; and that while the spirit 
was free, he was alternately in the light or the dark, accordingly 
as his thoughts were with his wife or with the star." 

Second instance. — "Plutarch relates, that a certain man, 
called Thespesius, having fallen from a great height, was 



taken up apparently dead from the shock, although no exter- 
nal wound was to be discovered. On the third day after the 
accident, however, when they were about to bury him, he 
unexpectedly revived; and it was afterward observed, to the 
surprise of all who knew him, that, from being a vicious re- 
probate, he beoame one of the most virtuous of men. On 
being interrogated with respect to the cause of the change, he 
related that, during the period of his bodily insensibility, it 
appeared to him that he was dead, and that he had been first 
plunged into the depths of an ocean, out of which, however, he 
soon emerged, and then, at one view, the whole of space was 
disclosed to him. Every thing appeared in a different aspect, 
and the dimensions of the planetary bodies, and the intervals 
between them, were tremendous, while his spirit seemed to 
float in a sea of light, like a ship in calm waters. He said 
that the souls of the dead, on quitting the body, appeared like 
a bubble of light, out of which a human form was quickly 
evolved. That of these, some shot away at once in a direct 
line, with great rapidity, while others, on the contrary, seemed 
unable to find their due course, and continued to hover about, 
going hither and thither, till at length they also darted away 
in one direction or another. ####■##•■#• 

Thespesius was then informed by one of them, that he was 
not dead, but that he had been permitted to come there by a 
Divine decree, and that his soul, which was yet attached tc 
his body, as by an anchor, would return to it again. Thes- 
pesius then observed that he was different to the dead b) 
whom he was surrounded, and this observation seemed to re 
store him to his recollection. They were transparent, anc 
environed by a radiance, but he seemed to trail after him a 
dark ray, or line of shadow.*' These spirits also presented 
very different aspects ; some were entirely pervaded by a 
mild, clear, radiance, like that of the full moon ; through 
others there appeared faint streaks, that diminished this 
splendor ; while others, on the contrary, were distinguished 
by spots, or stripes of black, or of a dark color. "f 

* See " Great Harmonia," vol. 1, p. 168, —description of the umbilical cord. 
fSee " Great Harmonia," vol. 2, — a vision concerning the origin of evil , sooi 
jo be issued. 


Third instance. — " Dr. Passavent mentions a peasant-boy 
who, after a short but painful illness, apparently died, his body 
being perfectly stiff. He, however, revived, complaining 
bitterly of being called back to life. He said he had been in 
a delightful place, and seen his deceased relations. There 
was a great exaltation of the faculties after this ; and having 
been before rather stupid, he now, while his body lay stiff and 
immovable and his eyes closed, prayed and discoursed with 
eloquence. He continued in this state for seven weeks, but 
finally recovered/' 

Fourth instance. — " The case related by Lady Fanshawe. 
of her mother, is very remarkable, from the confirmation fur- 
nished by the event of her death. ' My mother, being sick 
of a fever,' says Lady Fanshawe, in her memoirs, 'her friends 
and servants thought her deceased, and she lay in that state 
for two days and a night ; but Mr. Winslow, coming to com- 
fort my father, went into my mother's room, and, looking 
earnestly in her face, said, " She was so handsome, and looked 
so lovely, that he could not think her dead ;" and, suddenly 
taking a lancet out of his pocket, he cut the sole of her 
foot, which bled. Upon this, he immediately caused her to 
be removed to the bed again, and to be rubbed, and such 
means used that she came to life, and, opening her eyes, saw 
two of her kinswomen standing by her, (Lady Knollys and 
Lady Russell,) both with great wide sleeves, as the fashion 
then was ; and she said, " Did you not promise me fifteen 
years, and are you come again already?" — which they, not 
understanding, bade her keep her spirits quiet in that great 
weakness wherein she was ; but, some hours after, she de- 
sired my father and Dr. Howlesworth might be left alone 
with her, to whom she said, " I will acquaint you, that, during 
my trance, I was in great grief, but in a place I could neither 
distinguish nor describe ; but the sense of leaving my girl, 
who is dearer to me than all my children, remained a trouble 
upon my spirits. Suddenly I saw two by me, clothed in long 
white garments, and methought I fell down upon my face in 
the dust, and they asked me why I was so troubled in so great 
happiness. I replied, ' O let me have the same grant that was 
given to Hezekiah, that I may live f r teen years., to see my 


daughter a woman !' to which tney answered, It is done V — 
and then at that instant I awoke out of my ti ance !" And 
Dr. Howlesworth did affirm that the day she died made just 
fifteen years from that time.' " 

It is proper to understand, that the influx of principles into 
the minds of certain individuals is a result of the peculiar 
constitution and development of such minds ; and there is no 
direct and immediate influx of revelations from the Central 
Soul of the Universe, the Divine Mind, as is supposed and 
taught by theologians. Therefore, he whose mind is unfolded, 
or whose spiritual perceptions are extended to a higher sphere 
of knowledge, can comprehend more of the material and spir- 
itual universe than ordinary minds can conceive of; because 
simply such a mind perceives and understands all that exists 
beneath his exalted sphere of investigation. Thus every mind 
sees, comprehends, and expresses truth in proportion to its 
degree of development, and on a plane with its intellectual 
and spiritual elevation. Hence, all true inspiration must be 
spontaneous ; it must spring from the deep foundations of Na- 
ture, and seek an expression through the human soul and 
tongue, as the ten thousand rivulets, starting from the preg- 
nant side of stupendous mountains, converge and mingle in 
the distant valley, and form the mighty ocean. Every mind 
will see just that class of truths which his degree of spiritual 
exaltation will enable him to see ; and nothing more. I per- 
ceive in the world very many contributions of truth, — hun- 
dreds of tributaries of immortal principles flowing up from 
Nature's mighty depths through Musicians, and Mechanics, 
and Artists, and Scientific men, and Chemists, and Electri- 
cians, and Philosophers, and Poetic Moralists, and Theolo- 
gians, and Politicians, and through men of religious enlighten- 
ment and elevation, — the inspirations and contributions of 
each, tending toward a Unity, which unity will ultimately 
form one grand system of social, philosophical, and theologi- 
cal Revelations ; thus becoming the Light, the Experience, 
and the concentrated and systematized Inspiration of the 
whole world! 



Before the discovery of America there were almost innu- 
merable speculations concerning the existence, geography, 
extent, beauty, commercial advantages, wealth, magnificence, 
and inhabitants of the unknown Continent beyond the great 
waters, the restless Atlantic, whose limits had not then been 
ascertained. Plato allowed his intelligent love, for republi- 
canism and the happiness of the people, to inspire his intui- 
tive and conceptive powers, and he imagined a harbinger 
somewhere in the distant and undiscovered realms of this 
planet — a New Atlantis, where art, and science, and philoso- 
phy, and industry of all kinds, would be taught, justly remu- 
nerated, and cheerfully embraced by every inhabitant of that 
blessed country. Xolena, too, whose desultory meditations 
upon the glories of " An Enchanted Isle," or upon " The 
Kingdom of the Gods," so closely resembled the prophetic 
contemplations of the Isaiah of the Primitive History as to 
have become affiliated or blended with the writings of the 
latter, and thus voted canonical, and whose biography and 
thoughts are therefore buried in the history of other persons, — 
this philosopher, indulged his hopes that some new continent 
would ultimately be discovered, where righteousness could 
alone exist, where a generous, immaculate, philosophical King, 
(whose genealogy could be only traced to the royal races of 
the skies,) would rule the multitude, and disseminate perpetual 
blessings and concord over his divine kingdom, and where a 
free commerce would be enjoyed between the gods of the 
firmament and the inhabitants of the Enchanted Isle ! These 
were truthful prophecies. But of what ? Surely the Ameri- 
can continent has been discovered and populated. Its gigan- 
tic mountains, its rolling valleys, its charming lakes and riv- 
ers, its rich soil, its wide-extending prairies, its commercial 
advantages, its geological wonders — all, have been sought and 
found; but where is the "New Atlantis?" — where the "En- 
chanted Isle ?" — where the " Promised Land ?" — where the 
" Kingdom of the Gods ?" — where ? Listen ! Echo re- 
sponds, " Here '" But whence proceeds that silver sound ? 


Whence that deep, rich, joyous voice ? Lo ! it is a voice from 
the Spirit-Land, — the revelations of one who has surveyed 
the country beyond the grave ! 

Let us henceforth cease our imaginary speculations with 
reference to the appearance of the home of the soul ; let us 
hurl to the ground all fragmentary and false analogical reas- 
onings concerning the condition of the inhabitants of the 
spheres — reasonings, which compel us in our conclusions to 
locate a perfect hell here, a partial hell there, a moderate 
heaven on the left, and a complete heaven on the right ! Yea, 
let us be still ; let us listen, with our understandings open, to 
the revealments of him who has sought, and found, and re- 
turned with fruit from, the promised land — the kingdom of 
the righteous ! 

My readers remember, I presume, the interesting spiritual 
communication which I received from the pure and highly 
enlightened spirit of James Victor Wilson, and which com- 
mences on page 176, 1st vol. of the "Great Harmonia." They 
will, also, recall to mind his then very impressive concluding 
observations. # He says : — 

" The society of which I am a member is in numbers innu- 
merable. We are fond of traveling through the different 
societies and portions of the Spirit-Home. 

" On earth I was fond of mathematics and kindred studies; 
my desire for these acquirements is now totally satiated. 
Spiritual affinities are my studies now ; and, ere long, I will 
disclose what I have learned." 

I then informed the reader that his concluding words 
referred to some future disclosures concerning spiritual things, 
which, when I received them from him, should be faithfully 
presented to the world. lam able to present those disclosures 
now ; for, on the morning of the 25th of November, 1850, he 
caused me to feel his personal nearness and desire to enter 
the house in which I am at present residing. Accordingly, I 
proceeded to the door, opened it, and admitted my fraternal 

* The author is strongly moved to counsel the inquirer to read Mr. Wilson's 
first communication in connection with his second relation, given in this work ; for 
ihere is prubably no one circumstance so illustrative of the law of progress as 
the contrast, in point of intelligence, between these communications. 


visitor. By previous request, the family granted me the ex- 
clusive use of the parlor for this spiritual interview; we 
entered this room together, closed the door, and thus passed 
into the sacred sanctuary of interior communion. In three 
or four minutes, I abstracted my mind, by an act of volition, 
from outer things ; resigned my whole being to the invisible 
magnetism which descended upon and pervaded me ; and 
readily glided beyond the trammels of the body, and became 
as near a spirit as a person can possibly be and maintain his 
relationship to the physical organism. My brilliant visitor 
stood affectionately by my side ; though his feet did not de- 
scend lower than eighteen inches above the floor, — because a 
stratum of atmosphere, more or less dense, is always neces- 
sary for the spiritual organism to walk or stand upon. I was 
sufficiently in sympathy with him, to hear, to understand, and 
to enjoy, all he so musically dictated ; and, at the same time, 
I had the requisite control of my physical system to act in the 
capacity of an amanuensis. All conditions being now pure 
and proper, he thus addressed me : — 

"Again, my brother, I come to thee — again to tell thee of 
my heavenly treasures ! To tell thee of Love's exceeding 
loveliness, and of Wisdom's unutterable magnificence and 
infinite harmony. But my thoughts can not readily flow 
into earthly words ; because heavenly truths require a heav- 
enly language to reveal them. 

"O, what gorgeous Truths — what celestial Principles — 
what divine Powers and holy attributes uphold the Universe! 
I have seen innumerable beauties, and experienced unutter- 
able joy. I have gkzed upon numberless firmaments ; and 
and have become wealthy in the mighty blessings which they 

" I have had my being unrolled by the spontaneous work- 
ings of Eternal Principles, as the sun unrolls the flower; and 
now I come to divide with thee the happiness which I expe- 
rience^ — the inexpressible riches of my endlessly progressive 

" Yea, truly, there are no bounds to this glorious Universe ; 
there are no limits to the Infinitude in which it rolls 

"Accompanied by friendly spirits whose attractions were 


analogous to those my spirit feels, I have vish?d worlds upon 
worlds, — have already gazed and walked upon more planets, 
bedecked with immortal life, than I had believed in being, — 
and yet, my lovely companions, some of whom have lived in 
the Celestial Lands for many centuries, say ' that I have 
inhaled but the fragrance of a few of those flowers which 
grow on the margin of the Infinite Ocean !' 

" Yea, there are no bounds to the spheres in which we 
live — no death in the Homes of the Angels ! 

" I have seen unfold universes of immeasurable magnitude ; 
and, upon them, I have seen move countless constellations 
of minds, developed by eternal principles and endowed with 
an inheritance of endless duration. 

" And, O my brother, how omnipotent and omnipresent is 
the Law of Love ! How holy is that Great Divinity which 
breathes, throughout the angelic lands, an element of univer- 
sal joy, — a principle of eternal attraction and infinite happi- 
ness ! To meditate upon, and to study, the innumerable and 
infinite ramifications of this Great Love Principle, fills the 
searching soul with indescribable satisfaction. 

" The principle of Divine Love develops and determines 
all spiritual affinities. These affinities I have sought out and 
studied assiduously; and the heavenly consequences which 
they unfold spread themselves out before me in countless 
varieties like the bespangled wings of the distant firmaments. 

" But the poverty of thy language, my brother, is a great 
obstruction to my revealments. How can I tell thee, in 
terrestrial words, of the beauties, the blessings, the joys, the 
perpetually unfolding happinesses, which the Law of Love 
displays before me ? 

" O, what joy to be emancipated from the slavery of self- 
love ; to be introduced into the glorious Liberty of universal 
principles ! And the workings of these principles : — what 
soul-subduing music ? What soul-refining harmony ! 

" What inexpressible joy to behold, according to the opera- 
tions of these principles, the quickness and beauty of our 
marriages ! 

" Individuals are attracted to one another from all won is-; 
and where true adaptation exists there is a true marriag? -a 


union of soul with soul ; and so perfect and enduring is it, 
that all the attractions and enchantments of the spirit- world 
act always upon the conjugally conjoined as upon one living 
soul. Thus in the celestial empire " they neither marry nor 
are given in marriage, but they are as the angels," who find 
their eternal associates in accordance with the universal 
principles of spiritual affinity. 

" The God-joined spirits are never sundered ; but what 
man hath joined, by no other authority than custom or in- 
clination, is here severed; foi nothing but Truth — Holy, 
Eternal Truth — can exist in the Homes of the Angels •" 

Here I individualized a thought, and mentally asked friend 
Wilson the following question : — " Have the angels any em- 
ployments analogous to those on the earth ?" 

And he smilingly replied : — " Nay, for the angels are not 
in Slavery !" 

Thinking friend Wilson referred to the political, physical, 
or mental slavery, with which our earth abounds, and not 
perceiving their bearing upon his reply, I again mentally 
inquired : — " How does slavery give mankind employments 
unlike the occupations of spirits ?" 

He answered : " Thou understandest not my thought. 
The inhabitants of your earth are in bondage because they 
are immersed in things too material. A beautiful exterior is 
the chief desire among them ; or else, their desires are bounded 
by the circle of self-love, and their lives are devoted to per- 
sonal gratification. Therefore I mean, my brother, that man- 
kind labor to accumulate and cultivate the externals of life ; 
and thus they toil to acquire that which is exceedingly mate- 
rial, and passeth away like the evening breeze on the wings 
of night. The real joys and permanent realities of existence 
are unpurchasable ; for they constitute the life and happiness 
of the angels, — both on earth and in the Celestial Homes. 
We have, therefore, only those things which are real, elevat- 
ing, and eternal, and we labor not ; but mankind are m 
slavery ; because, not being advanced in pure Wisdom, they 
seek those things which .are not real and permanently benefi- 
cial ; hence their search is always attended with exceeding 
labor and dissatisfaction. 


"Behold the vide- spread earth, rich with supplies for 
numan wants ! , Behold the bright and brilliant sun/ shedding 
'ts light and heat abroad ! Behold the gorgeous magnificence 
of the wide-expanded firmament ! — surely, these things can 
not be purchased ; they exist for all !" 

Here I inquired : — " Why do you call the inhabitants of the 
spheres, angels ?" 

" Because," he replied, " the chief employment of spirits is 
the transmission of Thoughts, Truths, and Affections, from 
circle to circle and from sphere to sphere. Happiness and 
progression consist in receiving and imparting — in unfolding 
and assisting others to unfold — in seeking the Great Divinity, 
and in imparting to others the results of our celestial investi- 
gations; Angels, therefore, are messengers of Thoughts, 
Truths, and Affections ! 

" Think not, my brother, to find happiness and progression 
in the sphere of Self-Loye, nor in any thing which subjugates 
the spiritual to the material ; for I have learned, that the 
individual must lose itself in the general sphere of being and 
affection ere happiness is attained or progress made. 

" 0, what joy — what unutterable joy — to be emancipated 
thus from earth ! And yet the sublime principle of spiritual 
affinity causes me to feel the exact relationships or friendships 
which subsist between me and the inhabitants of your planet ! 
Tell this,* my brother, to those dear friends and relatives 
who knew me on the earth. 

" O, what ineffable delight to be an angel — to see with spir- 
itual eyes — to hear with the spiritual sense — to inhale the 
holy fragrance of immortal flowers, (the fair emblems of 
Purity and Truth,) — to understand with a spiritual under- 
standing; to search the inexhaustible truths of an Eternal 
Father — to enjoy the divine Life of his nature, which is 
Love, and Love only, forever and forever ! 

" O, the music of the universe, — how melodious, how inex- 

* The author has never seen the friends and relatives of this departed brother, 
and does not, therefore, know where they reside. But should they see this com- 
munication from their (to them) "deceased relative," they will at least read what 
he directs me to say to them. — If they believe it, it will pour gladness into their 


pressibly sublime and stupendous — are the silent, still, musi- 
cal workings of Immutable Principles! To me, my brother, 
the universe is a musical instrument on which the Great Divin- 
ity is perpetually expressing the infinitely diversified harmonies 
of hi? nature which is immeasurably deep and altogether un- 
changeable ! 

" I speak of the Universe, my brother, as if its dimensions 
and sublime realities were known to me ; but I have as yet. 
seen and comprehended only a fragment of formation. (1 do 
not use the word " Creation," for there is, properly speaking, 
nothing absolutely created.) The Whole System is a volume 
which even the highest seraph has not altogether read. 

" In the center of all formation is the Fountain of Love ; 
it floweth forth throughout all existences ; and we drink from 
it as from an ocean of pure water ! 

" And our Law is Love ! From this Law we never flee ; 
wheresoever we go there it pursueth us ; yet we feel the 
action ofrao Law external to ourselves. For each "is a Law 
unto himself;" and, I repeat, there is no antagonism here, only 
a divine emulation ; no absolute discord, only relative degrees 
of harmony. Yea, in all the love-circles, and in all the cir- 
cles of wisdom, wherein the principles of spiritual affinities 
perform their work so musically, there is no discord, only joy 
and peace — Eternal Peace ! 

" The angel's home is truly a "house of many mansions." 
The spirit-land is indeed a country of undying charms and 
positive attractions. It is brilliant with innumerable socie- 
ties; and like sparkling rivers flow forth the different mani- 
festations of love they bear to one another ! And, my brother, 
I will disclose to thee an arcanum : — Those spirits which 
emanate from the earth, or from any other planet in the universe, 
are introduced, into that society for which they entertain the 
most congenial sympathies or affections. 

"The love-circles and the wisdom-circles also, are just six 
in number — six grand divisions of spiritual holiness and inex- 
pressible joy! In the first three spheres, or spirit- worlds, all 
the innumerable societies are termed Spiritual Circles, 
because they form an IMAGE of the Great Divinity ; but 
hose societies in the three higher spheres are termed Celes- 


tial Circles, because they contribute a LIKENESS of the 
Great Divinity, the Infinite Father — from whom proceedeth 
Love and Wisdom, and unto whom floweth, through all, yea 
all, spirits on all earths and in all spheres, the countless joys 
and emotions which form the sum of all sentient existence ! 

" Undeveloped individuals who are interested more in per- 
sonal gratifications than in causing happiness to others, are, 
immediately after death, by the principle of spiritual affinity, 
introduced into the first sphere or circle of the second sphere ; 
which circle is termed Self Love. 

" And lonely individuals — or those who are unmarried in 
truth, (though they may have been attaqhed on earth by 
human laws to some companion,) and who are yet seeking, 
(because they feel drawn toward,) their proper and eternal 
associate — such, are introduced into the second circle in the 
same sphere ; and this circle is called Conjugal Love. 

" And thus, my brother, the spheres are peopled and be- 
decked with harmonious associations. These glorious as- 
semblages of angels call to, and answer, each other ; and 
spontaneously they mingle their innumerable voices into 
music and harmony. The third circle is called Parental 
Love ; the fourth circle Fraternal Love ; the fifth circle 
Filial Love ; and the sixth circle Universal Love. The 
sixth is particularly redolent with inexpressible Holiness and 
pure Wisdom. But they all are crimsoned and infinitely 
variegated with heavenly pleasures.* To behold all this, and 
to feel all this, fills my soul with unutterable ecstacy — a se- 
rene, sweet, philosophical joy, which none but angels know !" 

(Brother Wilson's face and head were glowing, when he 
uttered the above, with a soft clear light which quite dazzled 
my spiritual perceptions, and moved my mind with sympa- 
thetic pleasure. This light is visible at the hour of departure 
from this sphere, enveloping the head of the dying. See page 
165, vol. 1, " Great Harmonia." Brother Wilson thus 
continued :) 

"What an infinite system of education! How sweetly 

* For a more minute consideration of these "circles," I refer the reader to 
"The Philosophy of Happiness and Progression," in a forthcoming volume. 


are we taught ! How quickly do we learn the suolime mys- 
teries of life — the secrets of happiness /* 

" Some minds learn great truths in a few days ; but many, 
who pass from the earth into the spirit-world, I have seen, 
are very slow to disrobe their minds of error ; and such are 
detained in the first circle until all their theories are displaced 
by Truths ; their faith by Knowledge ; their pride by Humil- 
ity ; their uncharitableness by Fraternal Love ; and their 
terrestrialism by a perfect realization of Spirituality and 
permanent realities. 

" Tell the earth's inhabitants, my brother, to free them- 
selves of all rudimental things — of all unkindness and terres- 
trialism — ere they depart for this blessed and beautiful coun- 
try! Because we can see the motives, the state, and the 
intentions of every mind that comes to dwell among us, 

" Should any misdirected individuals desire to bring with 
them from their earthly habitation (what they can not enter 
here) the seeds of hypocrisy — of envy or jealousy ; of hatred 
or animosity ; of prejudice or retaliation ; of discord or dis- 

* It is sometimes thoughtlessly and recklessly said, in substance, by those 
whose minds are not elevated above prejudice and selfishness — " Why, if I 
believed these things as you profess to, I would take my fill of sin — I would steal, 
and murder ; and, if I should get, in any manner, embarrassed or fatigued with 
life and sensual gratifications, would commit suicide and glide into heaven." To 
such uneducated and misdirected minds I am impressed to say, — If you had my 
faith you would act altogether different. In the first place, you would not sin 
because you would know that vice injures yourself, disturbs your neighbor, and 
brings misery and despair upon the soul. Sin is self-punishing and self- 
destructive ; it is this decay which renders the sinner miserable. In the second 
place, you would not commit suicide because you would know that heaven is a 
condition of mind, and not a locality ; therefore, that you could not obtain 
happiness without that righteousness of motive and propriety of life, which alone 
render the soul harmonious and capable of heaven or enjoyment. In the third 
place, you would strive to be a man of Principle. For a person who could thus 
thoughtlessly express himself, is virtually acknowledging himself to be an unsafe 
member of society ; that he never does good for the love of doing good, (winch he 
would do if he had my faith,) but that he acts from fear alone ; serves God 
because he fears the devil ; is good because the rod waves over Ins back ; in a 
word, that he is a poor, unhappy slave to his prejudices and selfishness, and 
deserves the compassion of all good and benevolent minds. Whilst, if he had 
my faith he would forthwith strive to rise above those evils and errors which 
afflict society, and set his standard of progress and improvement as high aa 
Friend Wilson counsels him to do in the succeeding paragraphs. 


i ute ; we quickly perceive and pity the condition of such 
minds, and, as far as external aid can avail any thing, we 
assist them to unfold the sweeter elements of their nature. 
But we are still more secure from the invasions of terrestri- 
alisms (or earthly corruptions) than I believed previous to 
leaving the earth. Our great security consists in this, (and 
my soul throos with serene joy to relate it,) the seeds of dis- 
cord and misdirection can not germinate here because we have 
no soil in which to cast them. 

" Tell the earth's inhabitants, my brother, that should any 
of them come here with thoughts of unkindness burning in 
their mouths for utterance — tell them, those thoughts must 
remain unspoken, and be left to burn themselves to Purity. 
For we have no language whereby to express untruths, 
neither unkindnesses ; and no one amongst us will give 
audience to unheavenly things. This is a glorious truth — a 
grand and happy truth ; one that I early learned, and now 
mate with joy! 

" No one here misunderstands another ; for we are all trans- 
parent; our, interiors are seen by the inhabitants of each 
society; and Righteousness prevails throughout the Spirit- 

" No one here misappreciates another ; for, being well un- 
folded in pure wisdom, we judge with a righteous judgment ; 
and Justice pervades all the habitations of the angels. Jus- 
tice presides in our Father's house, and reigns throughout its 
many mansions. 

" Like a peaceful river, Wisdom springeth up and floweth 
over all the subordinate circles or societies which are in num- 
ber innumerable. It is like a mighty receptacle in which are 
deposited those everlasting pearls, the choice thoughts, affec- 
tions, and memories of these Celestial J^ands. 

" And we have contemplations so exceedingly immense, so 
immeasurably great and beautiful, that the Love and Life of 
the Universe appear open to our thoughts, and we drink of 
their infinite depths and thirst no more with the thirst of 

"As a tree spreadeth its branches over the weary traveler, 
and delighteth his sense with sweet perfume, ever while he 


smiteth it to obtain its fruit, so do the angelic spheres — the 
spirit- worlds — spread themselves over the earth's inhabitants, 
yielding them, in the stir hours of life's repose, joy and holy 
inspiration ! 

" Yea, my brother, Time and Space, prejudice and misdi- 
rection, discojd and other terrestrialisms, which are known 
on the earth, are to us, as it were, annihilated, for we are 
free ! — free, as truth maketh free her disciples ! And the 
Light which Truth giveth can not be extinguished — it is the 
Life of the Universe . 

" Behold ! my beloved companions have now come for me! 
To-day we visit a constellation of peopled planets in the south- 
east expanse of the firmament. Our mission is angelic ! we 
go to open, for the first time in that department of the side- 
real heavens, a free spiritual commerce between the second 
sphere and the inhabitants of those Orbs. 

" For a time I leave thee. Let all mankind feel themselves 
as a harmonious congregation in the sanctuary of the Great 
Divinity ; let them prepare for an emanation of immortal 
truths from our spheres ; let them tune their souls to that sil- 
very cadence which mingles with the music of the spheres, 
is echoed by the angels, and vibrates in the bosom of the 
Father ; let them send forth their voices in thanksgiving and 
joy ; for, in harmony with the convictions of many among 
them, the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand !" 

Our angelic brother thus concluded his second impressive 
and sublime discourse. It will be very readily perceived, by 
comparison of the two communications, that his spirit has 
advanced far in the Sphere of Wisdom. O, that the reader 
could have seen the radiant expression of his countenance, 
when he exclaimed — " Behold ! my companions have come 
for me ; our mission is angelic," &c. This unexpected ex- 
clamation diverted my attention from the act of writing, and 
directed it to the observation of five personages who had just 
that moment arrived from the second sphere. They were 
evidently to accompany him to the "south-east portion of the 
sidereal heavens." All this apparently was done to make me 
realize + he entire and complete naturalness of the habits of the 


inhabitants .f the spirit-land, and the gentle and pleasing 
character of their consociations. 

On completing the record of his sweetly breathed commu- 
nication, I immediately proceeded to open the doors for friend 
Wilson's departure. With my spiritual perceptions I wit- 
nessed his egression ; also I saw him meet and galute his five 
beauteous companions, who were associated in conversation 
together near the house. When he joined and embraced 
them, they, with their eyes sparkling with undying friendship, 
and their countenances beaming with the soft brightness or 
radiations of entire devotion, expressed much joy, and exhib- 
ited the sparkling reciprocations of intelligent affection. I 
stood as calmly as I could, and contemplated those harmoni- 
ous minds in their deliberations. What an association of 
great, good, and wise beings ! Even physically speaking, this 
heavenly tableaux was inexpressibly beautiful. Each one 
seemed like an embodiment of personal beauty — of symmetry 
and proportions indescribable. There was an exquisite em 
bonpoint about the anatomical developments of these beings, 
so unearthly and yet so completely an amplification of the 
rudiments of that personal beauty sometimes seen on earth, 
that to attempt to describe it would be to carnalize the most 
significant element of spiritual elegance. I dwell on the 
beauty of these personages, because they were isolated or re- 
moved from the presence of far more princely beings, whom 
I have also seen, and because the contrast between them and 
the forms of earth was so intensely favorable to the proper 
appreciation of their angelic loveliness, that I could not resist 
a few critical observations. 

As I have said, I contemplated those concordant minds 
while they were engaged in their premeditations with regard 
to the objects and incidents pertaining to their blessed mis- 
sion. When they were all in readiness to depart — their num- 
bers being coupled, two walking together — friend Wilson 
gave me a parting glance beaming with fraternal love, and 
the whole party passed very rapidly away in the direction of 
their assigned duties. Immediately upon beholding this, I 
returned to my ordinary condition. 

Since the above recorded interview with him, friend Wil* 


son has promised me another communication, which, he says, 
will particularly refer to the analysis of the causes of social 
evil among men, with special reference to the arrangement 
of human society in harmony with the structure of the heav- 
enly associations, — thus unfolding literally the kingdom of 
heaven on earth — thus, finally, responding to the prayers of 
the philanthropic and the righteous who have for centuries 
asked, though seldom with an understanding heart, the su- 
pernal powers to hasten the impending millennium. With 
regard to this future communication, I can only say, that, 
when our beloved brother is ready to impart it, I will endeavor 
to be faithful to my occupation as his amanuensis, and a cor 
red account of his pure and elevating thoughts shall be pre 
sented to the world. 


Actuated by the profoundest convictions of duty, theolog- 
ical architects have constructed, from a combination of right 
and wrong materials, a vast doctrinal labyrinth ; and now, so 
far from being in the simple truth, they seem irretrievably 
lost in the mysterious windings of this amazing immensity. 
Centuries ago, and about the retiring of the period of deifica- 
tion — when fathers, chieftains, kings and other superiors, were 
feared and worshiped by inferiors — the opinion was consci- 
entiously entertained and promulgated, that the patriarchs 
were supernaturally endowed and commissioned to convey 
requests to, and receive communications from, the great 

That uninterrupted intercourse with the Deity might be 
secured and preserved, pyramids were founded, embodying 
the sacredness of the catacomb, the monument, and the tab- 
ernacle. Many generations of incessant toil were required 
for their consummation. And the devotion, the sanctimoni- 
ous solemnity, the honest conviction of duty, and the purity 
of motive, which characterized, prompted, and nerved each 
person to labor for the accomplishment of the holy end, have 

11 % 


nowhere a parallel. The materials employed were of quantity 
sufficient for the construction of a beautiful city ; the amount 
of labor bestowed, would, properly organized and applied, 
have gardenized a wilderness ; and the mass of wealth ap- 
propriated and consumed, might have enriched a nation, and 
alleviated the wants and gladdened the hearts of thousands. 

For a succession of centuries after their completion, the 
pyramids were sacredized monasteries, consecrated to the 
exclusive use of deified priests and revered patriarchs. And 
the supposition universally prevailing that these men received 
unmeasured knowledge from mysterious sources, the untaught 
individual voluntarily imposed upon himself arbitrary ceremo- 
nies, gloomy incarcerations, and sanguinary inflictions. 

But time marched on, and the scene was changed. The 
experience of ages, traditionally preserved, demonstrated the 
inutility and unrealness of long-fostered convictions. And 
multitudes, emboldened by familiarity with the sacerdotal 
orders, and no longer confounded or amazed by their preten- 
sions unestablished and unredeemed, boldly interrogated those 
long supposed founts for religious illumination. But no voice 
* was heard. The holy retirements were searched, and naught 
but lifeless bodies embalmed and interred, and a melancholy 
desolation, were visible to the seeker after truth, in the place 
where, alone, it was once believed to exist. And now they 
stand in desolate grandeur, untenanted by priest or prophet — 
useless, except as marks of humanity's growth ; and unad- 
mired, except by the intelligent antiquarian, who gathers 
therefrom lessons of oriental architecture, and food for his 
excited imagination. 

And yet the Egyptian Pyramids are not destitute of an 
interior signification. Although once the dormitories of heli- 
opolesian prophecies, they are now evidences that error is 
essentially mortal and self-destructive. They briefly represent 
the history of the supernatural pyramids, which, composed of 
, mythology and theology, received their last addition, and at- 
tained their greatest magnitude, when dawned the nineteenth 
century. And in them, too, is uttered the fearful prophecy, 
which will be fully verified in the corresponding abandonment 
of all long-established theological Superstructures, whose an- 


giilar projections wound the sensibilities of every harmonious 
and well-balanced mind ! 

A voluntary departure of their present sacerdotal inhabi- 
tants is not m the least anticipated : for these have an en- 
tailed right to occupy their mysterious apartments ; but that 
the people will demand spiritual light and knowledge not in 
their possession, and that they will silently escape, and leave 
their systems desolate, is of all things the most absolutely 
certain. And as the ancient Egyptian pyramids have no 
place in the sacred affections, and are only objects of wonder 
in the present age ; even so will modern systems of theology 
lose their influence upon the mind, and be known only as 
monuments, indicating the death and burial-place of imper- 
fect forms of thought, to the intelligent interrogator in future 

There are many questions concerning the principle of right- 
eousness and the nature of human responsibility, yet unsolved. 
Present them to the clerical profession, considered by the 
majority of Christendom as spiritual guardians and unerring 
teachers of wisdom, and their whole body would be convulsed 
with protracted discussion, in character the most complex and 
unprofitable. Hence, it seems unwise to seek information 
where, as in the pyramids, so little is possessed ; and it is unkind 
to increase, with perplexing questions, the expiring struggles 
and writhing contortions so manifestly racking the entire or- 
ganization of the supernatural faith. As, how r ever, it is agree- 
able to prudence, kindness and reason, to institute inquiries 
where alone can be found substantial and lasting satisfac- 
tion, we are justified in opening our understandings to the 
influxions of good and truth, and in venturing to ask — What 
is religion ? 

In the structure of the material universe are manifested a dis- 
tribution of geometrical proportions, in order and completeness 
the most unspeakably perfect and beautiful. Every particle 
in the vast empire of visible creation, is impressed with a har- 
moniousness of position, distance, density and movement, alto- 
gether beautiful and tranquilizing to the contemplative mind. 
Besides the reciprocal relations existing between every atom 
in being, there is an equilibrium of forces presiding over and 


actuating all worlds. These forces have their expression in 
the stupendous revolutions which all suns and planets make 
around the great Central Orb of all existences. Here are 
presented the^zr^ indications of the true religion. 

But approaching nearer ourselves, we can not but perceive 
the beautiful chemical relations, and the religion of individual 
compounds, that serve to make and embellish our present hab- 
itation. The generalizing mind is irresistibly led to admire 
the friendship of particles in chemical composition — the gen- - 
tie tendency to separate or coalesce according to existing 
conditions and affinities. And the constant exchange or re- 
ciprocation of matter and life in the flowering vegetation of 
our earth — together with the unvarying justice displayed be- 
tween all ascending forms, from the simplest germ to the de- 
velopment of man — is eloquent in proclaiming the true reli- 
gion. And concentrated in man are those principles of equal- 
ity, and attributes of distributive justice, which constitute him 
a being of unequaled perfection and beauty. 

Man is, above all created forms, capable of a just concep- 
tion and appreciation of harmony ; for treasured in the human 
mind are the most beautiful sentiments, which demonstrate 
it to be the highest representative of universal creation — in- 
deed, that it is a miniature universe. A constant predispo- 
sition to individual harmony and happy contemplations, is 
implanted in the spiritual heart of man, whereby his interior 
and external relations are determined, and his aspiring affec- 
tions are directed to the meditation of infinite love and ever- 
lasting righteousness. 

It is the religious sentiment that enables the mind to rightly 
perceive, and thoroughly enjoy, the exquisite harmony exist- 
ing between odors, sounds, and colors — to admire their devo- 
tional arrangement and appropriateness in the order of Nature, 
and to justly perceive their adaptation to human require- 
ments. It is the aspiring and venerating element that ena- 
bles the mind to say, with conscious assurance of truth, that 
the same principle which unites any two atoms, and produces 
right relations every where in the physical world, constitutes 
the religion of the soul. 

Religion teaches man to discriminate and judge between 


right and wrong ; to desire happiness. It teaches him to love 
the lofty mount, the flowered valley, the waving forest, and 
the fragrant meadow. Religion, in its utoadest and most com- 
prehensive sense, is the principle of righteousness, which gov- 
erns in harmonious concert, the world of matter and the world 
of mind. It is the moral and just relationship universally ex- 
isting between all men, spirits, angels, worlds, and the Deity. 
In a word, it is Universal Justice. 

Religion, then, is an integral element eternally established in 
the human mind ; and, like other associative faculties or ele- 
ments there, it develops itself into a variety of manifestations, 
according to the favorableness or unfavorableness of the cir- 
cumstances by which the mind is surrounded and influenced. 
The great diversity of religious institutions, and the numerous 
rites, ceremonies, and obligations imposed by them, prove that 
this sentiment has had, and has now, an incorrect development. 

It may be aske"d — What was the first mis-direction of the 
religious sentiment ? 

To which I am impressed to reply, that — reasoning per- 
ceptively, and having no principles of systematic interpreta- 
tion, the early inhabitants of our earth believed creation to 
be the fantastic production of invisible beings, in disposition 
the most capricious and revengeful. The storm, the earth- 
quake, and the volcano, gave rise to the most terrible appre- 
hensions. Feeling a sense of inward responsibility — a reli- 
gious obligation to some unknown and omnipotent power — 
they instituted a system of material worship, and relieved the 
adoring sentiment, by acknowledging dependence upon, and 
promising loyal obedience to, their lifeless images. Altars 
were erected, and no sacrifice was omitted that was supposed 
to be pleasurable to the gods. And the misdirection increased 
every where. Empowered by the false assurance of right, 
the mother and her child yielded to the consuming flame, 
that Elysium might be perfumed and the gods appeased with 
their sacrificial incense. Personal and national invasions 
were reciprocated ; and, each one believing himself instru- 
mental in fulfilling divine purposes; rushed into the arena of 
conflict with enthusiastic emulation. Such manifestations 
as these, together with the casting of the unoffending infant 


into the Ganges ; breaking the father beneath tlie mighty 
car ; causing the brother to be trampled upon by men and 
horses; and the brutal subjugation of females; were evi- 
dences of religious misdirection. History, and the dearly 
purchased experience of nations, justify the conclusion that, 
in the Barbarian Period, the first, general form of religious 
misdirection and worship, was Superstition. 

What was the second mis-direction of the religious senti- 
ment ? 

Customs being continually changed by the lapse of time 
and the diversity of circumstances, and new modes of thought 
and expression being consequently developed, these things 
exercised a powerful influence over this system of sensuous 
veneration. The successive modifications of this form of 
worship, in its passage up to and development into a differ- 
ent organization, were almost innumerable. The experience 
of ages having demonstrated that long-revered objects and 
images were unworthy of veneration, the unsatisfied senti- 
ment radiated in another direction, which was quite necessary 
and perfectly legitimate. The chiefs and rulers, fathers and 
prophets, were now adored and elevated to the highest possi- 
ble eminence in human estimation. Temples of worship 
were founded and splendidly embellished ; and the perform- 
ance of religious ceremonies became the supposed sacred 
duty, and the general custom. 

Manifestations of deferential regard, resolving itself into 
idolatrous adoration, to the parental heads, became frequent. 
In truth, every real and imaginary (Obligation was acknowl- 
edged, and every transgression, however unimportant, con- 
fessed, accompanied with importunities for absolution, till 
indigence and religious servility became almost universal. 
The fathers and the temples were mediators between God 
and His people ; and all possible authority was supposed to 
be in their possession. 

Mental servitude and voluntary submission to existing in- 
stitutions and priestly authorities, were the legitimate and 
unavoidable consequences. In their ignorance, they seriously 
believed that Jehovah's spirit was incarnated and incorpo- 
rated in priest and temple. Every curse and blessing, every 


condemnation and forgiveness, .herefore, was pronounced in 
the name of the Lord. And, jealous of cotemporaries, and 
elevated by inferiors into god-like potentates, ambitious chief- 
tains formed immense armies, and battles were fought and 
victories achieved that Jehovah's will might be done in the 
earth. Hence, .self-imprisonment in doctrinal dungeons, and 
external rites, and ceremonies, and wars, were generally re- 
garded as expressions of religion, as essential to future hap- 
piness, and as highly pleasing to the Lord ; for in his name, 
and with his undoubted approbation, all deeds were per- 
formed. Substantiated by ecclesiastical records, the conclu- 
sion can not be escaped, that the patriarchial form of religion 
was Fanaticism. 

Wliat is the third mis-direction of the religious sentiment ? 

The misdirected religious sentiment, and its ramifications 
throughout the historical tissues of past times, at length be- 
came so wearisome and uncongenial, that the more strong 
and philosophic minds unchained, while others had tram- 
meled, themselves, and prominently assumed an antagonistic 
position to all received opinions. The chain being thus 
severed, similar minds rushed into mental and religious lib- 
erty quite unprepared. Having been, like their ancestors, 
all their lifetime subject to bondage, and being now emanci- 
pated into a sphere of thought with which they were wholly 
unacquainted, these intellects employed their time and talents, 
not in building a more glorious system of faith, but in attack- 
ing and demol'shing the old superstructures. And judging 
superficially, these minds imbibed the belief that all religious 
phenomena, and all sacredized rules, institutions, and cere- 
monies, were conceived in, and developed from, the fertile 
womb of the imagination. And these persons losing their 
fellowship with, and sympathy for, those authorities and obli- 
gations so revered by the disciples of antiquated Theology ; 
and disregarding those duties and precepts considered so es- 
sentially necessary to present and future happiness ; the clergy 
were arrayed against them, and they against the clergy. 
This diametrical opposition ultimately resolved itself into a 
supposed duty, — a balance-wheel thus being formed that, by 
its philosophic weight, the superstitious and fanatical ma- 


chine, constructed by learned and unlearned theological me 
chanics of previous ages, might move with less irregularity 
The sense of duty being thus inverted, the beautiful truths of 
immortality and of one great central Cause, were almost ob 
literated from the human mind. The third form of religious 
misdirection, then, is Skepticism. 

Thus it is made manifest, I think, that the wrong develop 
ment of the sentiment of Justice was, in the Barbarian Period 
Superstition ; in the Patriarchal Period, Fanaticism ; and in 
the Civil Period it is Skepticism. As in one family, there are 
the old and young, the parent and child ; so are these three 
forms of religious growth discoverable in every town, country 
and kingdom of the present century. It is quite unnecessary 
to consult history in order to ascertain the truthfulness of 
this statement ; for an excursion of a few leagues into the in- 
terior of either of our principal states would supply the mind 
with numerous confirmatory illustrations. The disease is 
every where existing, and is contagious ; but it is modified in 
symptom and aspect, according to the great diversity of 
temperaments and circumstances existing in men and society; 
for superstition is a fever which gradually increases into the 
transition paroxysm of fanaticism, of which skepticism is bul 
the extreme, the inversion, the chill. 

Do the Barbarian and Patriarchal forms of religious gov* 
ernment still exist ? 

■ Yes, but with certain modifications. It is true that, unlike 
the barbarian, we have no God of caprice, but we have of 
miracle ; we have no fears of volcanic fire, but we have of 
an unquenchable Gehenna ; we have no speechless idols, but 
we have deified Books ; no altars whereon to sacrifice our 
physical being, but we have altars upon which to resign and 
crucify our reason ; there is now no crushing of the bodies of 
men by ponderous cars, but their minds are crushed by pre- 
judices ; and, unlike the barbarians, we trample not on men 
with horses, but we do with dogmatic Theology. 

Chronicled upon the memory of every mind are experi- 
ences, more or less confirmatory of the truthfulness of this 
comparison ; but no less perfect is the analogy between the 
second age and the present. For, unlike the patriarchs, we 


have no temples, but churches ; no adoring and potentializing 
of men because of their age, but we venerate ideas and re- 
cords be3ause of their antique origin; we have no religious 
invasive hostilities, but we have clerical warfare ; no period- 
ical passovers, but we have eucharists ; we have no mental 
restrictions, but we are privileged to live and move within 
the circle of a creed. 

Probably the phenomena of religious misdirection have 
never presented themselves so conspicuously as at this day ; 
but that they have existed, to a greater or less extent, in all 
previous ages, is plain and un'deniable. Although those rites 
and ceremonies, and ordinances now ir: use, are of no im- 
portance in reforming and making men happier ; yet wisdom 
prescribes their continued use, as safeguards against a greater 
misfortune — religious anarchy. The truth of this remark 
will appear most obvious to every reflecting parent. It is 
well known that children, becoming accustomed to play with 
articles of a particular kind, are exceedingly clamorous, and 
will weep excessively, if suddenly deprived of them. The 
judicious parent, therefore, in order to avoid the creation of 
more disturbance than is unavoidably caused by their use, 
will kindly persuade his children to put them aside, and will 
engage their attention with more profitable matters. Now, 
notwithstanding many men have acquired the character of 
being learned in the science and metaphysics of Theology, 
the fact can not be disguised that they are like mere children 
in the primary school of Nature ; and thus they are ever 
seeking for, and are highly delighted with, marvelous stories 
and supernatural manifestations. Moreover, as necessary 
appendages and members of their religious organization, 
the ancient fathers bequeathed a number of ordinances, in 
the child-like veneration and use of which the children are 
alone quiet and content. The persuasive admonitions of 
wisdom, therefore, will ever instruct ; but never urge the 
adoption of any measure, having the least tendency to wound 
the misdirected worshiper ; for when such minds grow " to 
the fullness of tie stature of a perfect man," they will volun- 
tarily abandon present usages, and "put away childish 
things" forever. 


Let us now inquire — -What is the first correct development 
of true religion ? 

The answer is simple. Residing in a material body, per- 
fect to the adjustment of an atom, the spirit, experiences a 
deeply impressive consciousness of entire symmetrical pro- 
portions — a sense of self-harmony. Accompanying this most 
perfect and beautiful of all rudimental sensations, is an intui- 
tive perception of the natural Laws of life, and a simple, 
clear understanding of what constitutes a correct action. 
How to live so as to secure the general order and har- 
mony of one's own existence, is the first natural consid- 

To preserve internal health, so as to enjoy external wealth 
spontaneously bestowed from the inexhaustible repositories 
and treasuries of Nature, is the constant and central study 
of the duly balanced mind. The tenderest regard for per- 
sonal happiness ; the simplest means for its attainment ; the 
natural privileges to which body and mind are ever entitled, 
are correct subjects of contemplation and desire, and a due 
attendance thereunto is prescribed by the interior sense of 

And seeking a harmony of objects, forms and colors, pre- 
sented in the wide-spread fields of Nature, to supply the eye 
with its appropriate gratification ; or inventing melodious 
sounds to gratify the ear ; cultivating the science of agricul- 
ture, or arranging and combining articles of food, that a har- 
mony of flavors may please the taste ; courting wood-lawn 
flowers or the violet's fragrance to charm the smell ; and 
living in the most simple and natural manner, doing nothing 
to disturb, but every thing to augment the harmony of per- 
sonal existence, are the ceremonies and sacred obligations 
imposed upon man as growing out of, and associated with, 
the true religion. 

Deep within, reposes a sweet conception of the Great 
Spirit Father. This interior light refreshes the mind, and 
tints its every thought with celestial beauty, and inspires it 
with immortal aspirations. The untaught mind utters no 
sound, but breathes the fervent prayer of gratitude and reli- 
gious veneration, by living right. And the text, growing out 


of the true sentiment within, is, at first, "know thyself;" and 
the admonition to personal justice, or the maxim that " char- 
ity begins at home," is the legitimate discourse. The mind 
is internally convinced, that the duty due its Creator, is dis- 
charged in religiously observing and devotionally obeying 
the natural rules of life ; in rightly using every individual 
endowment. Therefore, the first development of the native 
religious element is Self-Justice. 

Let us again inquire — What is the second correct develop- 
ment of true religion ? 

Well comprehending the material and spiritual relations 
and unity of its self-hood, the mind intuitively recognizes a 
harmonious relationship which should subsist between every 
man, and the sacred ties that should inseparably unite, and 
constitute of the whole, a Brotherhood. That a friendship 
may subsist between all, and that each may live in reference 
to the interests of the whole, is the constant desire and the 
object of the greatest of all interior affections. The tenderest 
regard for general desires and interests ; the establishment 
of the means to render kindly offers reciprocal ; the security 
of the natural rights granted to every man by his Maker, 
and the universal happiness of mankind, are objects sought 
by one prompted by the unfolded sentiment of the internal 
arid true religion. 

And studying the harmony of temperaments, and the con- 
geniality of individual spheres, to gratify the holy sentiment 
of conjugal affection ; securing homes, and surrounding 
them with natural and elevating enjoyments, to improve 
and delight the pa/rental affection ; inventing productive ma- 
chines, and making improvements in, and advancing the 
interests of, every science and useful art, to satisfy the fra- 
ternal affection ; employing all deferential expressions in 
addressing the retiring generation and treating them with 
constant and delicate propriety, as prompted by the filial 
affection ; and imbuing with goodness, and strengthening 
with truth, the immortal life-springs of the human soul, so 
that a melodious instrument, composed of individual and 
general interests, may be constructed to concert the beautiful 
harmony of human affairs, to gratify the universal affection 


— ai*3 the true baptisms, the true sacraments, and the saving 
ordinances of the internal religion. 

And now, the conception of God, and the confidence in 
His eternally-fixed laws and universal providence, expands 
and towers above the religious harmonies of tei restrial crea- 
tion ; it grows majestic and sublime. It is made distinctly 
manifest, therefore, that the text which is appropriate to this 
stage of religious development is, " love thy neighbor ;" and 
the spontaneous sermon is, " do unto others as you would 
have others do unto you." Hence, the second growth is 
Fraternal Justice. 

If it be asked — What is the third and highest development 
of true religion ? 

I reply that, after understanding the laws of Nature, and 
the unchangeableness of their operation in personal and 
general existences, the mind adopts the principles of right- 
eousness, and urges their application. The social relations of 
men are investigated, classified and harmonized. Prompted 
by justice, each man studies himself; his physical and spirit- 
ual qualifications, his fitness and relative attractions to the 
nearest, or most distant, neighbor ; and a voluntary spon- 
taneous unity is the result. 

Considered as immortal impulses to pure action and 
pleasurable industry, the innate desires are provided with 
pure and congenial gratifications. Religion being thus above 
every thing, descends to all departments of human life and 
action ; for commercial interests uniting with the agricul- 
tural laboratories of every town and state, capacious store- 
houses will be established, and filled with food for general 
consumption. Land-privileges and home-comforts will be 
guaranteed to every inhabitant of the earth. 

True religion will develop its true likeness ! A suitable 
home, and an appropriate tract of land, secured to each indi- 
vidual according to his actual want and capacity to improve ; 
and well-constructed edifices for the accommodation of all ; 
will be the churches, the convents, the monasteries, and the 
charitable institutions, of the true but at present unloved 
religion. In truth, working out in universal society that 
exquisite harmony which is represented in the general struc- 


turo of the bocy and mind, is the highest possible manifesta- 
tion of the religious sentiment. 

In this stage, the conception of God has grown into an 
idea, grand and beautiful. The idea is that God, together 
with His material, universal Body, is a vast, glorious, 
majestic, kind, and affectionate Personality — and that all 
men, spirits, and angels, are His dearly beloved and eter- 
nally progressive children. 

Accompanying this idea, is a knowledge that a relationship 
and correspondence subsists between all worlds, forms, and 
existences in being. That the " Lord God omnipotent 
reigneth," is the fixed but growing conviction. Indeed, the 
sublime assurance that God is very Man, comprehending 
within Himself the "all in all," blooms like an immortal 
flower in the Heavenly garden of the religious mind. The 
third growth of the religious sentiment, therefore, is Universal 

An immense contrast is here presented — the misdirection 
of the native religious element on one side, and its correct 
development on the other. The one is superstition, fanat- 
icism, and skepticism ; the other, self-justice, fraternal jus- 
tice, and universal justice. There is a Heaven-wide differ- 
ence between them. But it may be asked — 

Hoiu shall we discriminate between the wrong and right 
development of the religious element ? ♦ 

The intelligent Pilgrim will perceive, I think, that the 
difference between the wrong and right development of the 
religious sentiment consists in this, that the one is the broad, 
popular road which leads to the destruction of harmony and 
desolation of mind ; and that the other is trie straight and 
beautiful path, which leads to all present and future happi- 
ness. This religion originated in the bosom of the Divine 
Mind ; it was deposited by Him in the human soul, and will 
live forever. It is every one's guardian spirit ; it is an 
unextinguishable interior light ; it is, like every other spirit- 
ual sentiment, an angel teaching us our duty to the body and 
mind, the parent and brother, the universe and the Father. 
It lives and w r ill live majestically, independent of churches, 
books, and creeds. It has caused, in ts misdirected and 


inverted operation, all we most regret and deplore ; and it has 
caused, and will cause, in its proper development, all that we 
most love and admire. 

To ask what a man believes, that we may know whether 
to trust and respect him, is not wise. The most religious 
man, the man nearest the kingdom of Heaven, is one who 
lives consistently with himself, in harmony with the neigh- 
bor, and considers justice his spiritual companion. 

The simplest idea of self-responsibility will grow into a 
compound one, and embrace the whole fraternity of human 
creation ; and acknowledging universal relations, the mind 
will expand through all spheres, a devoted disciple to the 
good and the true. To cultivate the true religion,* we must 
be free, very free from every prejudice and circumstance 
that can trammel or impede its primary operation. Nothing 
must be allowed to reverse or prevent its upward tendency. 

First, then, "know thyself;" secondly, "love thy neigh- 
bor ;" thirdly, " be good, be truthful, be just, love God, and 
be happy." I know this to be the true but unloved religion. 

With regard to truth and mystery, and the necessity of 
reliable spiritual intercourse, James J. G. Wilkinson, in his 
recent classic biography of Swedenborg, the Swedish philos- 
opher and seer, says : — " We study the spiritual w T orld, 
because one of us has been there, and reported it ; and we 
study the natural world, because it is given to us, and our 
senses are given to it, in short, because we did not make it, 
but it is a divine fact. Whatever we have made ourselves, 
we do not study, which is a sufficient demolition of sub- 
jective knowledge. Thus from the spheres a blackness is 
Jfeparting. Mystery, the mother of the abominations and 
harlots of the earth, is unrolling from theology, philosophy, 
and science ; and soon the practical, the only sublime, will 
be all in all. For time will not wait long, after marrying 
the mind to experience, before the importance of daily life 
will not only suggest but allow or disallow every theory, 
upon whatever subject put forth. 

# # * # The lowest experience of all time is rife hi 
spiritual intercourse already; man believes it in his fears 


and hopes, even where his education is against it ; almost 
every fami y has its legends, and nothing but the wanting 
courage to divulge them keeps back this supernaturalism 
from forming a library of itself. Yea, and every mourner, 
by a freshly-opened grave, shoots with untamable love 
toward departed friends, and bespeaks them, while the 
genius of grief is on him, as persons of real and presentable 
stuff. At such a clever time, burial services are but the 
background on which the heart delineates its native skies. 
This is the sense of universal mankind. 

Science, too, is infected with these vulgar apprehensions ; 
it can not shake them off, though it can not adopt them. 
What would it not give to be rid of mesmerism, or even of 
magic and astrology, which it has never known how to 
exterminate? This is hopeless now. These griffins of 
knowledge have bitten into its substance, and must either 
become sciences, or science dies of them. The positive 
school is precisely that which can least resist the invasion 
of supernaturalism. Many materialists already have fallen 
before it, and sunk, as might be expected, into a peculiar 
unreasoning superstition. Nothing can save them but atten- 
tion to spiritual experiences. Add to which, that the scien- 
tific men, with their deep breaths and fixed objects, are 
taking the path to seership in their own bodies ; * * * 
for science itself is the appointed Seer of the Future. 

" Old experience dotli attain, 
To something of prophetic strain." 

Again, if we turn to the arts, electric telegraphs make 
spiritual presence between distant places ; London and 
Edinburgh commune in spaceless conversations. Another 
medium, glowing hotter with world-friendships, will give 
mutual sight to the ends of the earth. Only sink into the 
air-mine of community, and India and England shall be 
permanent natural apparitions to each other. The mirage 
is a true sign-post of this consummation. Distance is dying, 
and will be only represented in the altitude of the human 
perceptions. Magnetism itself, in its instant rounds, derides 
and despises it ; the very stones appear to each other by its 


spiritual communications ; and shall men, vho are one in a 
nobler magnetism, be reproved by the f;iendships of the 
ground ?" 

In conclusion, I feel impressed to remark, that the era of 
mythology and superstition is fast decaying. Ignorance, 
bigotry, skepticism, fanaticism, intolerance, spiritual depres- 
sion, and all slavery — the great evils which now beset man- 
kind — are rapidly dispersing ; they shall recede entirely from 
the earth, never again to enslave and degrade humanity. 
This world of thought and affection, and of social relations, 
shall be progressively purified, until there shall be unfolded a 
new heaven and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness. 
And the evils which now exist, shall be known only to those 
who will trace the history of our race ; which they will do 
with mingling feelings of pity and regret. By spiritual 
intercourse we learn that all men shall ultimately be joined 
into one Brotherhood ; their interests shall be pure and 
reciprocal ; their actions shall be just and harmonious ; they 
shall be as one Body, animated by universal Love and gov- 
erned by pure Wisdorn. Man's future is glowing with a 
beautiful radiance. The mental sky is fast becoming clear 
and serene ; and the scene is one of grandeur and sublimity. 
Truth will consume all error and artificial theology, whose 
power is weakened, and whose corruptions are revealed, by 
the divine light of Nature's manifestations. Yea, all evil 
and error will be finally subdu^ .1 and banished by the triumph 
of the principles that are good, divine, and unchangeable ; 
and unrighteousness shall be no .more ! Streams of good and 
healthy inspirations will spring up, and flow down, to cleanse 
and refresh the moral world, on whose advancing tide the 
whole race will ascend to intellectual and social harmony, 
and to a high state of spiritual elevation ard intercourse. 


No. 308 






Bay and Eveisin* 









ess.— lore. Kindness, si rt ia, •Hon , etc. 
Lotk.— Union for life, the pairitie instinct. 
I.iivk.— Care of «ils]n imr, and all voilttK. 
v —Sodality, imlo;i an.i cliiuiiiit «.f Irk-mls. 
i vkxkss. — Love of iioiiioniil round v. [ness, 
Y. — Application. IiiiNhin-c up cousecuti vu- 
«sa.— Clinsllig to life, lepullinK disease. 
:skss.— Defense, resolution, rr»ii*e, courage. 
vknkss — Kxteniiinafi'iii.scvei i! v.lnmlncss. 




Ski.k Es 


Horn.- Ex 


:km. —Self-respect. di.-iiiv. seir-ivli. nice. inde- 
— Stability .petsevc anee .decision. ipendence 

hisskss.— Sense ol"ri-ht. iustice, dutv. etc. 

ectation, anticipation, trust in the future. 

•y. — intuition, prescience, prophecy, faith. 

s— Worship, adoration, devotion, deference. 

CK.— Sympathy, kindness, goodness. 

CONSTRirCTIVKNKSS. — llIKClHllt\ , maviml sV ill. [r 

Idkamty.— Taste, lov« of beauty, poetry, and rem 
SUBLIMITY.— Love of the grand, vast, eniile 
Imitation.— Copying, minii- King.dolng like. [InO^M 
Mirth.— Pun, wit, ridicule facet iousness, joking. 
Individuality. — Observation, desire to sec and k 
Form.— Memory of shape looks, persons, and t/.fl 
Si/.k. — Measurement of quantity, distance. (.. !>tf i 
Wkioht. — Control of n.otion, balancing, bulling, 
Color.— Discernment and love of colors, tints, hues, 1 
OitDKR. — Method, system, going by rule, keeping thing 
Calculation— Men al arithmetic. reckoning, fin placf 
Locality. — Memory of places, position, etc. ftails, etc 
Kvbntuality.— Memory of facts, events, history, d« 
Timk. — Telling when, time of day, dates, how long, etc 
Tusk. — Love of music, singing and playing fr>/ ear. 
Languagk. — Expression by words, acts, tones.looks. etc 
Casuai.ity —rVniuinv, thinking, reasoning, adapting 
Comparison.— Analysis, inferring, discrimination ,et« 
Human Naturk. — Perception of character, motives, etc 
Suavity. — Pleasantness, blandne3s, persuasiven'* s s. 

Phrenological Examinations and Advtoe, wilh Chnrts and "Written Descriptions of Charac- 
ter, when desired, by Fowler and Wells, No. 308 Broadway, New York. 


We publish the following PoruLAK and Scientific Journals : 

A Repository «>f S''icncp, Literature, and General Intelligence, devoted to Phrenology, Education, 
Mechanism, Architecture, and to all those Progressive Measures which are calculated to Reform. 
Elevate, and Improve Mankind. Illustrated with numerous portraits and other engravings. A 
beautiful Quarto, suitable for binding. Published monthly at One Dollar a Year in advance. 

THE WATER-CURE JOURNAL.-Devoted to Hydropathy, its Pbilo* 
ophy and Practice : to Physiology ami Anatomy, with illustrative engravings : to Dietetics, Exercise, 
Clothing, Occupations, Amusements, and those Laws which govern Life and Health. $1 a Year. 

LIFE ILLUSTRATED: A. Journal of Entertainment, Improvement, and 

Progress. To illustrate Life in till its forms and aspects, to discuss the leading Ideas of the day, td 
record all signs of Progress, to advocate the Political and Industrial Rights of all classes, to point 
out all legitimate means of Economy and Profit, and to encourage a spirit of 

Hope, Activity, Self-Rcliaucc, and Manliness 

among the People, are somp of the objects aimed at in bus journal ; and possessing superior facili-' 
lies for doing so, we shall rest satisfied with nothing short of making Like Illustrated one of the 
verv best family newspapers in the world. Published weekly at Two Dollars a year. 
Foil Tiikee Dollars, a copy of each of these three journals will be sent a year to one address. 

Please address FOWLER AND WELLS, 308 Broadway, New York. 


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